A “Paired Cases Contrast” Method in the Absence of Reliable Metrics in Organizational Research: Proof of Concept

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Sage Publications


We offer initial proof for a “contrast of paired cases” method for arriving at statistically reliable insights about innovation, which, our data demonstrated, has the potential for being generalized to many types of organizations, rather than being restricted to organizations of a particular size, type, or sector. Our method relied on making sure respondents drew sharp contrasts between two different organizations with which they were intimately familiar. We analyzed the results of 165 different paired contrasts. Patterns emerged which were statistically significant and generally consistent with case literature on organizations. The proof we offer for this “paired cases contrast” method, if found generalizable to a larger sample of organizations, offers a cost-effective approach to organizational research. Very importantly, the method works even in the absence of metric scales for comparing widely varied organizations and overcomes the problem of intercoder reliability in the process.