Khartoum University Journal of
Management Studies

  • Abbreviation: Khartoum Univ. J. Manage. Stud.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1585-8069
  • DOI: 10.5897/KUJMS
  • Start Year: 1994
  • Published Articles: 35

Some Methodological Insights in Context-structure A|lignment in Organizations

Hesham Eldaw
  • Hesham Eldaw
  • Khartoum University Journal of Management Studies KUJMS School off Management Studies
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 01 May 2011
  •  Accepted: 01 June 2011
  •  Published: 30 June 2011


Most of the researches that aimed at investigating the relationship between context and structure have been conducted on bivariate basis. Woodward (1965) advocated her technological-imperative rationale without seriously taking into account the other contextual variables and by employing relatively limited number of structural variables. Hickson et al (1969) (hereafter referred to as the Aston Group) who conducted a study with the objective of testing the broad hypothesis that technology and structure are strongly related have done this on a bivariate basis. They investigated the relationship between the selected structural variables and each contextual dimension in an independent manner. They have tested the relationship between each contextual dimension and each structural element using

product moment correlation. The Aston Group rejected Woodward’s hypothesis that technology is a prime determinant of structure because they had found that there was a moderate correlation between technology and structure and at the same time the relationship is overwhelmed by the correlation with size. However, the Aston Group believed that technology influences structure in organizations in which the work flow operations represent the bulk of the organization activities. Also, one can notice that ownership as an important contextual dimension was not considered in those studies. Had the researches used more sophisticated statistical techniques, they could have arrived at more concrete conclusion about the relationship between context and structure in organizations. Most of the latter researches who worked a long the same line have adopted similar statistical technique in their work (Harvey 1968, Hage Aiken 1969, Zwermman 1970, Comstock and Scott 1977 Inkson et al 1970, Blau and Schoenherr 1971, Child and Mansfield 1972, Child 1973, Khandwalla 1974, Blau et al 1976, and Mohamed 2007).

Keywords: Structural variables, contextual dimensions, multiple analyses of variance, organization theory