JSBJ1440 Contributing to theory progress through research (4 cr)

Study level:
Postgraduate studies
Grading scale:
Pass - fail
Responsible organisation:
Jyväskylä University School of Business and Economics
Curriculum periods:
2020-2021, 2021-2022, 2022-2023


In this seminar, we examine what these theoretical conversations are, how they are structured, how they develop over time, and how contributions are positioned within them. We approach these topics from the point of view of the social organization of knowledge and the collective, evaluative aspects of research. In examining how contributions are made and evaluated, we also examine how our theories progress through collective efforts where authors build upon one another’s work.

Learning outcomes

This is a doctoral seminar on how we make contributions through empirical research. The seminar is intended for doctoral candidates who are in their dissertation phase, that is, either thinking of the topic and the research design, already collecting and analyzing data, or writing up the results. The main objective of this seminar is to explore the ways in which you can make your research and arguments resonate with your audience, in short, how to construct a contribution.

Description of prerequisites

Admission to JSBE Doctoral Programmes; valid annual registration to doctoral studies. Also, students are expected to be familiar with the research literature in their own field of research, and ideally, more broadly as well. Students are also expected to have taken doctoral-level seminars both in qualitative and quantitative methods. Familiarity with the literature on philosophy of science, methodology and epistemology in particular, is also useful but not necessary.

Study materials

Set of academic research articles, assigned by the lecturer.

Completion methods

Method 1

The seminar is divided into 5 interdependent sessions of 3 hours each. In order to complete the seminar, a student is required to: 1) Participate in at least 4 of the 5 seminar sessions (because the sessions build fundamentally on one another, attending all 5 is strongly recommended). 2) Prepare for class by completing all the required readings, and actively participating in in-class discussions and group exercises. 3) Write a Learning Journal.
Evaluation criteria:
Grades are based on the performance in the three required categories.
Select all marked parts
Parts of the completion methods

Participation in teaching (4 cr)

Participation in teaching
Grading scale:
Pass - fail