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How Industry Analysts Shape the Digital Future$
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Neil Pollock and Robin Williams

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198704928

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704928.001.0001

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Give Me a 2✕2 Matrix and I Will Create the Market

Give Me a 2✕2 Matrix and I Will Create the Market

Chapter:
(p.226) Chapter 9 Give Me a 2✕2 Matrix and I Will Create the Market
Source:
How Industry Analysts Shape the Digital Future
Author(s):

Luciana D’Adderio

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704928.003.0010

Scholars have described how rankings can be consequential in shaping the economy. The prevailing argument is that they wield influence through encouraging ‘mechanisms of reactivity’ amongst market actors. The chapter investigates whether there are additional agential aspects of rankings beyond such ‘social’ accounts. It suggests that ‘sociomateriality’ is also a significant aspect of a ranking’s influence. The chapter develops our discussion of Gartner’s Magic Quadrant, and similar ranking devices such as the ‘Forrester Wave’, to show how the ‘format and furniture’ of a ranking can mediate and constitute markets. One constraint was rooted in the visual format. For a Magic Quadrant to help its audiences discriminate between offerings in the market, a certain number and distribution of vendors is needed. This was described to us as ‘the beautiful picture’: with too many it became hard to discriminate; with too few established providers there was little need to resort to analysts.

Keywords:   sociomateriality, socio-materiality, Magic Quadrant, rankings, reactivity, Espeland, market devices, two-by-two matrix

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