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The field of inter-organizational relations : a jungle or an Italian garden?

Cropper, Steve and Ebers, Mark and Huxham, Chris and Smith Ring, Peter (2008) The field of inter-organizational relations : a jungle or an Italian garden? In: The Oxford Handbook of Inter-Organizational Relations. Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp. 719-738. ISBN 978-0-19-928294-4

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Each chapter in this Handbook contains an explicit assessment of priorities for future research that would extend and deepen an understanding of IOR. Given the diversity of contributions to this volume, it is perhaps not surprising that recommendations for future research are varied. And because the three sets of contributions start from different points-empirical manifestations, theoretical and disciplinary perspectives, and thematic interests-so the recommendations, too, might be expected to lead along different paths, 'cutting' and framing future research topics in different ways. Nevertheless, as others have suggested (Brass et al. 2005) it is possible to see some points of convergence across all three parts of the Handbook. We begin our discussion of the contributions and suggestions for the future by focusing on these points of convergence. We then look in turn at the specific ideas that emerge from, and relate to, the specific framings of each of the parts. Finally, we draw together insights about methodological issues.