Necessary Condition Analysis (NCA): Logic, Theory, Methodology, and Applications



Necessary Condition Analysis (NCA) becomes increasingly popular among management scholars and that is why we organize a workshop at the Academy of Management Annual Meeting of 2019 in Boston. You can sign up for the workshop as soon as the online program is available.

Workshop Description

In this workshop you will learn how to conduct Necessary Condition Analysis. Necessary but not sufficient statements are commonplace in organizational and management publications. The logical meaning of a “necessary condition” for an outcome is that the outcome cannot exist without it; it is needed. Necessary Condition Analysis (NCA) is an upcoming approach for formulating and testing necessary condition theories. The method was recently published in Organizational Research Methods (2016, 2018) and is now used in many fields including HRM, Strategy, OB, Operations, and Entrepreneurship.

NCA understands cause-effect relations as “necessary but not sufficient” and not as additive logic used in regression analysis. “Necessary” means that an outcome will not occur without the right level of the condition, independently of the rest of the causal structure (thus the condition can be a “bottleneck”, “critical factor”, “constraint”). In practice, the right level must be put and kept in place to avoid guaranteed failure, and to allow the outcome to exist. NCA can provide strong results that are complementary to traditional additive logic and regression approaches. By adding a different logic and data analysis approach, NCA adds both rigor and relevance to theory and data analysis.

This interactive session familiarizes scholars with the method and has two parts. Part 1 is a general introduction discussing the importance of necessary conditions, illustrated with examples from different fields, and comparing NCA with regression analysis. Part 2 helps participants to become the first users of NCA in their field, with a practical demonstration about the application of NCA on how to build necessity theories, and how to analyze data for testing such theories using the NCA software. For more information about NCA see

More information about Necessary Condition Analysis can be found on

Organizer: Jan Dul, Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University

Presenter: Sven Hauff, Helmut Schmidt University

Presenter: Stefan Breet, Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University

Presenter: Henk Van Rhee, Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University

*Workshop sponsors*: Research Methods (RM) Division, Organization and Management Theory (OMT) Division