The Configurational Perspective in Organizational Psychology: Fuzzy Sets for Novel Insights

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Title: The Configurational Perspective in Organizational Psychology: Fuzzy Sets for Novel Insights
Other Titles: Die Konfigurale Perspektive in der Organisationspsychologie: Fuzzy Sets für Neue Erkenntnisse
Authors: Meier, Alexander
Thesis advisor: Prof. Dr. Karsten Müller
Thesis referee: Prof. Dr. Thomas Staufenbiel
Abstract: This dissertation aims to apply the configurational perspective to organizational surveys. The studies included in this dissertation demonstrate that an increasingly popular configurational method can be applied to large dataset sizes similar to organizational surveys. This method is called fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA). Additionally, the incremental insights of fsQCA are illustrated by taking traditional methods into comparison. At the same time, the presented research addresses current methodological challenges to fsQCA in order to shed light on its application in the context of organizational surveys and to reduce reasons inhibiting researchers to use this method. The first study conceptualized and empirically investigated differently complex interplays of core manageable factors predicting and influencing high levels of affective commitment. Specifically, the results indicate that job design, organizational treatment, leadership, and recognition were consistently found to be essential in terms of incremental, relative, and configurational importance for the management of affective commitment. The second study aims to deepen the understanding of the formation of change-supportive intentions by adopting a configurational perspective. Investigating the theory of planned behavior in a longitudinal setting, the results suggest the combination of high change-related attitude and high change-related perceived behavioral control as the most consistent and reliable solution for fostering high change-supportive intentions. Both the first and second study addressed methodological challenges by adopting robustness tests for large-N fsQCA to increase trustworthiness and reduce sensitivity of the results. Additionally, as required for fsQCA data preparation, recommendations for thresholds were made and different calibration techniques investigated. The third study connects these two studies by performing a simulation on artificial small-N and large-N datasets comparing regression analysis, fsQCA, and its different calibration techniques. In particular, new insights on the joint use of both methods and methodological recommendations on the calibration of fsQCA could be given. In sum, the presented research highlights the applicability of fsQCA to organizational surveys and that a configurational approach can further enrich the understanding of organizations and organizational life.
Subject Keywords: organizational survey; fsQCA; configuration; fuzzy set; large-N; affective commitment; change-supportive intentions; organizational change; simulation
Issue Date: 19-Jan-2018
Type of publication: Dissertation oder Habilitation [doctoralThesis]
Appears in Collections:FB08 - E-Dissertationen

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