Title: Review of business growth models: methodology and the assumption of determinism

Authors: Matti Muhos

Addresses: Oulu Southern Institute, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4610, FI-90014 University of Oulu, Finland

Abstract: Numerous configuration models have attempted to clarify management priorities during the early stages of business growth. Earlier reviews have focused on the basic, visible characteristics of these models. Less attention has been paid to research methodology and basic assumptions. This study aims to fill this gap by review of configuration studies conducted over the past six decades. The focused meta-analysis reveals what kinds of research strategies, choices and time horizons, and empirical evidence are utilised for development of the models and what alternative views the models provide in relation to the assumption of deterministic firm growth. The study opens fresh perspectives to methodology and assumptions of the configuration studies and provides guidelines for future research.

Keywords: business growth models; review; growth stages; growth configurations; growth process; methodology; assumptions; enterprise development; small and medium-sized enterprises; SMEs; determinism; modelling; meta-analysis; SME development.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMED.2015.073810

International Journal of Management and Enterprise Development, 2015 Vol.14 No.4, pp.288 - 306

Received: 23 Apr 2015
Accepted: 20 Sep 2015

Published online: 22 Dec 2015 *

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