In a rapidly changing and inter-disciplinary world it is important to understand the nature and generation of knowledge, and its social organization. Increasing attention is paid in the social sciences and management studies to the constitution and claims of different theories, perspectives, and 'paradigms'. This book is one of the most respected and robust analyses of these issues. For this new paperback edition Richard Whitley - a leading figure in European business education - has written a new introduction which addresses the particular epistemological issues presented by management and business studies. He approaches the sciences as differently organized systems for the production and validation of knowledge - systems which become established in particular contexts and which generate different sorts of knowledge. He identifies seven major types of scientific field and discusses the establishment and growth of these sciences, including the major consequences of the nineteenth-century expansion of employment opportunities for researchers; the competitive pursuit of public reputations; and the domination of intellectual work by employees. He also examines the divergences in the way research is organized and controlled both in different fields, and in the same field within different historical circumstances. This book will be of interest to all graduate students concerned with the social study of knowledge, science, technology, and the history and philosophy of science.