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CUNHA, Julio Araujo Carneiro da; PASSADOR, João Luiz  and  PASSADOR, Cláudia Souza. Recommendations and notes for categorizations in research on interorganizational networks. Cad. EBAPE.BR [online]. 2011, vol.9, n.spe1, pp.505-529. ISSN 1679-3951.

There have been many studies on interorganizational networks in the field of management since the 1980s. However, even nowadays there are still some disagreements concerning definitions and methods in this field of study. Researchers of this topic are frequently at a loss when it comes to its taxonomy, which hinders the construction of a structured knowledge base. Therefore, the objective of this study is to provide recommendations and notes for researchers in this field that may be helpful when it comes to establishing essential elements for the classification of interorganizational networks, enabling their identification in order to analyze, compare and understand them according to their specific characteristics. Therefore, a researcher can categorize his research object according to the following possibilities: formation; alliances types; guidance for relationships; guidance for links in the chain; presence of a central organization; governance; institutionalization; analysis unity; type of competition; proximity and; requirements for alliance synergies. However, categorization is just one of the steps to be taken by interorganizational researchers within a larger set of actions. As an alternative possibility for a broader empirical process, researchers are advised to: (1) Clearly establish an objective for inter-organizational network research; (2) Establish network boundaries according to research objectives; 3) Choose an adequate research strategy according to the established objective; (4) Be aware of what the focal points for the empirical research are and conclude the empirical study according to ethical standards; (5) Understand the historical and social context of the network; (6) Categorize the network; and (7) Point out the established categorizations and the justifications of the chosen methods in the final report.

Keywords : Interorganizational networks; Methodology; Network categorization.

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