Inter-study and Intra-study Replications in Leading Marketing Journals

Inter-study and Intra-study Replications in Leading Marketing Journals

Purpose – The authors aimed to examine the presence and character of inter- and intra-approaches to replication studies published in five leading marketing journals (Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, Marketing Science, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science) across four decade intervals (i.e. 1980s, 1990s, 2000s and 2010/2011). The research sought answers to three research questions.

Design/methodology/approach – Content analysis of a randomly selected sample of 2,717 articles found 128 replicative studies in the journal issues. Comparisons of the replication approaches of the studies address two issues: the criticism that intra-study replication is not true replication as it is inconsistent with the criterion of researcher independence and the reported outcomes of the replicative studies relative to those of the original studies.

Findings – Overall, the presence of replications increased over time; however, the increase was attributable primarily to the number of intra-study replications published in two decades, the 2000s and 2010/2011 intervals. Conflicting findings infrequently appeared in the replication studies regardless of approach, indicating the possible existence of confirmation bias in the marketing literature.

Originality/value – Replication in marketing is either improving or stagnant depending on the accepted definition of replication. Of special importance, given the questioning of the intra-study approach as true replicative research, more replicated findings produced by independent researchers are needed to establish theoretical validity of marketing knowledge for use by both marketing academicians and decision makers.

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