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Re-framing the status of narrative in family business research: Towards an understanding of families in business

Eleanor Hamilton, Allan Discua Cruz and Sarah Jack

Journal of Family Business Strategy, 2017, vol. 8, issue 1, 3-12

Abstract: This article will emphasize the status and relevance of narrative research in the study of families in business and family business strategy. It argues that narratives can provide a better understanding of the intricate connections between family and business and across family generations in business. Narratives generate knowledge by helping to shape a collective identity and as a form of intergenerational communication. By focusing on narratives as a phenomenological inquiry, we argue that interviews allow researchers to engage often in emotionally charged and intimate conversations with individuals that want to talk about experiences as members of a family business. This paper will discuss the usefulness of narrative approaches for family business strategy research, develop a catalogue of research questions for exploration, highlight challenges and offer solutions to deal with them when using narrative methods in family business research. This paper argues that while several challenges may be encountered, narratives allow researchers to delve into the intricate lives of members of a family in business.

Keywords: Narrative research; Families in business; Phenomenological inquiry; Entrepreneurship; Family business strategy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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