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CHAPTER 10 INTRODUCTION 11 Background of the Study Diversification has been an essential basis for the growth and survival of firms in the last half of the twentieth century due to the vulnerability of the single-business firms to the fast and unexpected changes in the environment Ansoff 1965 Penrose 1995 As such corporate diversification has been one of the most one of the most widely researched Johnson and Scholes 2002 p304 Moreover within the diversification research most attention goes to the investigation of the relationship between corporate diversification and the performance of firms It should therefore come as no surprise that the relationship between diversification and performance has been one of the most extensively researched areas in the discipline of industrial organization strategic management and finance Datta ea 1991 p529 Rumelts 1974 study has been the start of a huge stream of literature exploiting the relationship between corporate diversification and performance of firms Nevertheless various attempts to demonstrate the effects of diversification on performance are inconclusive Johnson and Scholes 2002 p305 This lack of a clear answer in the diversification research motivates the present study The purpose of this study is to illustrate a map regarding the mainstream research on diversification-performance relation ever since Rumelts seminal study to identify how far Rumelts study match into subsequent empirical studies to identify the major drawbacks of previous studies and further to provide tentative suggestions for future research 12 Research Methods This study is conducted as an extended literature review The aim is to output a new synthesis of different insights into previous research on the relationship between corporate diversification and performance of firms Thus an extended literature review is basically sufficient The challenge is to choose good publications and articles dealt with the topic of this dissertation Jankowicz 2002 13 Dissertation Structure The dissertation consists besides the introduction of four additional chapters The research methodology outlined in chapter two
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