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Agency Theory: Background and Epistemology
Understanding the history behind our major theoretical lenses is fundamental to using these theories to explain various phenomena. We revisit the literature in agency theory, add incremental advancement to the historical viewpoints that have been recently discussed, as well as reveal three prominent influences that have been less developed as influences of agency theory: Weber and Simon, The Great Depression and Berle, and the Chicago School. Figure 1 depicts the combination of these incremental advances to others’ work along with these three less unpacked influences. A discussion follows these sections which provides implications and limitations of agency theory given the historical background.