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The Tray of loose sand: a thick description of the state-owned enterprise sector of China seen as a business system

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Recent critiques of international and comparative management theory have drawn attention to the inadequate way in which research commonly addresses the 'context' of business. Work in the comparison of societal business systems has led to progress in addressing this deficiency and ideas are drawn from that field in order to illuminate the case of the state-owned enterprise system of China. The work of Ragin and of Maurice is noted for its advocacy of holistic analysis, and the epistemological advantages of doing so. The work of Geertz in the study of cultures using 'thick description' lies behind the mode of representation advocated and illustrated. The Chinese state sector is analysed from the standpoint of its emergence within a larger complex adaptive system, and seen from the viewpoint of its embeddedness in a set of institutions and in turn a set of frameworks of cultural meanings. The complex connections, and historical determinants, are used to argue for the sector's slow demise, but in the context of emerging alternatives in the wider economy.

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en

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application/pdf

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http://flora.insead.edu/fichiersti_wp/inseadwp2005/2005-57.pdf

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