The view has prevailed for the better part of the twentieth century that small firms do not perform an important role in Western economies. Official policies in many countries have favored large units of production because there were strong reasons to believe that large firms were superior to small firms in virtually every aspect of economic performance--productivity, technological progress, and job security and compensation. However, in the 1970s, evidence began to suggest that small firms in some countries were outperforming their larger counterparts. Perhaps the best example of this trend was in the steel industry, where new firms entered the market in the form of "mini-mills," and small-firm employment expanded, while many large companies shut down plants and reduced employment. Although no systematic evidence exists to determine unequivocally whether smaller units of production are as efficient as large firms or are, in fact, more efficient, some researchers have concluded that the accumulated evidence to date indicates that small firms are at least not burdened with an inherent size disadvantage.
Thus, an alternative view has emerged in the economics literature, arguing that small firms make several important contributions to industrial markets. First, small firms are often the source of the kind of innovative activity that leads to technological change. Small firms generate market turbulence that creates additional dimensions of competition, and they also promote international competition through newly created niches. Finally, small firms in recent years have generated the preponderant share of new jobs.
However, empirical knowledge about the relative roles of large and small firms is generally based upon anecdotal evidence and case studies, and such evidence has proved inadequate to answer major questions concerning the role of small firms across various industries and nations. An additional difficulty is that it is not obvious what criteria one should use to distinguish small firms from large ones. While a “small firm” is often defined as an enterprise with fewer than 500 employees, research studies of small firms use a wide variety of definitions.
The passage suggests which of the following about the empirical study of small firms' role?
关键词empirical study of small firms' role
最后一段是说：关于大小公司的关系的empirical knowledge 是基于anecdotal evidence和case study的，这些evidence不足以去解释 小公司的role。另外一个difficulty就是区别大小公司的标准不清楚。一般怎么认为，而study里面怎么做的不一致（ a wide variety of definitions）
选项A does not support the theory that small firms' role is significant.本段未提及
选项B 市场骚乱的程度是 primary indicator of small firms' role.未提及
选项C new niches created by small firms has provided important data 本段未提及
选项D provided reliable evidence 回文段落说了不够reliable ，与回文内容不符
我觉得A错误不是在于anecdotal evidence不能support the theory，而是文章指出这个evidence 本身是不adequate的。
回文定位到最后一段：“empirical knowledge about the relative roles of large and small firms is...” 首先排除：B，C，D； B讨论的范畴在第二段和这个题目无关，C没提过examination of new niches D：这个与文中内容相反，case study 并不能是一个reliable evidence A：这个我选错了 但我的理解是： 文中说Empirical knowledge 是基于个anecdotal evidence，而这些evidence是无法去回答小公司在行业内的影响。 有关Empirical study，作者最后一段并没有建议／说明 个别案例是不支持第二个view的。 而是 为了进一步说明 empirical study需要一个对小公司更precise的definition -全文最后一句。
An additional difficulty不应该是和empirical knowledge平行吗？为什么是被包含的关系
0 0 回复 2018-09-12 00:24:14
我的理解empirical knowledge包含evidence和case study，an additional difficulty指的就是case study，又包含在empirical knowledge里，所以这道题选E，A我觉得错在文中说的是不充分，这里直接就是不支持
2 0 回复 2020-08-14 16:39:05