Revisit: Introspection


Introspection and Introspective Thought, Special issue of Journal of Business Research, Edited by Stephen Gould; Deadline 31 Jan 2010

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Revisit: Introspection and Introspective Thought

Call for Papers: Special Issue of the Journal of Business Research Deadline: 31 January 2010

Introspection is something everyone does but in research domains, it remains contested and controversial. For many scholars introspection is part of the interpretive consumer culture theory (CCT) domain and receives labels including introspection, subjective introspection or researcher introspection. However, while introspective narratives seemingly have a natural home in CCT, this type of research still seems to be forbidding even to CCT researchers. For others introspection is a psychological phenomenon informed by behavioral decision theory (BDT) which holds that introspection is difficult if not impossible in that people often do not know why they do things or how they arrive at decisions. Researchers viewing introspection this way also embrace a scientific framing so that introspective studies generally include multiple informants in experimental settings; introspection by a single researcher in narrative mode is not embraced as scientific.

This special issue invites all viewpoints. However, each submission should involve the researcher or researchers doing introspection. A study may be done in the context of non-researchers doing introspection as well, but the paper must include the researcher introspecting. A suggested list of topics is given below, but my construction of introspection should not be seen as a limit or constraint. The main idea is to provide a forum for out-of-the-box thinking and to unleash the hidden creativity and potential of researchers who have a story to tell. I suspect that there are scholars who have been looking for such an opportunity to share their ostensibly idiosyncratic but nonetheless relevant perspectives to map some underexplored or even hitherto unknown dimensions of everyday consumer and business life.

Possible topics include:

  • Introspection on introspection
  • Narrative or autobiographical introspection
  • Introspection and self-observation
  • Introspection as a literary approach
  • Introspection in relation to phenomenological or ethnographic research.
  • The place of introspection in consumer culture theory (CCT)
  • Introspection and experiential consumption
  • Introspection and various domains of business (e.g., organizational, marketing, financial)
  • Introspection and poststructuralism
  • Introspect on a theory or theme as a critique (e.g., on an aspect of CCT or behavioral decision theory (BDT)
  • The relationship of introspection and identity
  • The boundaries of what is revealed and what not (private versus public)
  • The relationship of introspection and culture
  • Introspection and embodiment
  • Introspect on something you do not see in consumer or other business research to reveal understanding
  • Introspection and the process of theory construction
  • Introspection in terms of reflexivity in critically deconstructing academic research
  • Introspection in relation to metacognition, consciousness and self-awareness
  • Introspection and cognition and/or memory
  • Introspection and affect
  • Introspection in relation to fantasy or counterfactuals
  • Introspection in interrogating issues of automatic versus deliberative responses to stimuli
  • Introspection and neuroscience.


Papers should be less than 30 double-space pages in length (counting all pages) and follow all the guidelines of the Journal of Business Research. Electronic submissions are required. All papers accepted for review will be subjected to a double blind peer review procedure. All papers should be sent to Stephen Gould (