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Abstract

Despite the growth and interest in the agribusiness profession, what constitutes agribusiness management research continues to be a perennial debate. This study argues that the advancement of a field is predicated on defining a field’s set of fundamental questions or issues because resolution of such issues serves to elevate the field to a high level of research inquiry. In order to advance the domain of agribusiness management in agricultural economics, this study examines four questions of strategy and outlines the pertinent theories used in resolving such concerns. Theories which we feel can advance agribusiness management to be a distinct discipline include Coase’s (1937) treatment on the “nature of the firm,” Simon’s (1957, 1976) concept of bounded rationality, Penrose’s (1959) theory of the growth of the firm, and subsequently Barney’s (1986, 1991) Resource-Based View. The relevance and implications of this early work should serve as a guide to those seeking to explain an agribusiness firm’s existence, behavior, growth and heterogeneity.

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