Dialectical is derived from a Greek word which means to argue or contend with. In earlier time the Greek uses the word dialectical in order to express a specific manner of argumentation for making specific decisions on the various facts that are based on opposite reasoning, impact of such act nullify the validity of the argument which reaches to another fact of creation. Later on the dialectical are taken as the world view and a method which is required for the analysis of some work. Another approach very much similar to it is Devil Advocacy which is used along with it for the purpose of decision making (Berniker & McNabb, 2006).

Dialectical inquiry can also be called as dialectical research or dialectical investigation.  It is a type of qualitative research which involves the method of dialectics whose aim is to discover the truth by examining and investigating competitive ideas, thoughts and arguments.  It can also be taken as the exploratory research in which there is no requirement of any hypothetical research to be evaluated but new sort of understandings is to be developed. In this sort of inquiry, the researchers thought is opposite to the empirical research in which they are working with ideas, facts and arguments rather than data. According to Bertell Ollman in 1993, research might be of two types dialectical and non-dialectical and in dialectical, the inquiry or research is applied to a range of problems. [sky]

Dialectical inquiry is used for the improved and enhance group of decision making in which two groups are assigned with a specific problem and each of the group is responsible for the evaluation and determination of the alternative groups. The top managers who are monitoring various tasks have to present there all alternatives and each of the group can critic the other one. Following figure elaborates the process of such inquiry in which with various alternatives dialogues and arguments are done in order to accept any of them. This figure is taken out from the source Irwin McGraw Hill Companies, Inc 2000.

Advantages of Dialectical Approach

Several advantages are taken out from the implementation of the dialectical inquiry approach, that are;

• Different range of ideas can be explored.

• Provides help while on emphasizing the point of contention that is the critical points.

• It provides with the incentive for bridging seemingly irreconcilable opposites. 

• Various sorts of incentives are provided in order to determine factors of creativity.

According to Mason, the DI approach is the factor of superiority provided to the experts. This approach is seems to be the most common approach that is preferably used for the strategic planning of the business. Different members that are involved in this approach provide experts advice related to the plans an organization should adopt. This will also determine and evaluate the organization’s environment, its personal values, its resources and its social responsibility (Mitroff, 1974). Dialectical approach is also used to examine and determine the conflicts rose in the organization as well as the management strategies.


• Mason, R. O. (1969). A dialectical approach to strategic planning. Management Science. Pp: 15, B403-BA14.

• Berniker, E., & McNabb, D. E. (2006). Dialectical inquiry: A structured qualitative research method. The Qualitative Report, 11(4), 643-664.

• Mitroff, I. I. (1974). A Brunswik lens model of dialectic inquiring systems. Theory and Decision , Vol. 5, 45-67.