Case Research Methodology course
This are some of my notes from Case Research Methodology course by Robert Scapens and Chris Humphrey. I started writing this during the course and revised/published a few days later.
Overall impression. I liked the course and would recommend to take it to people at the early stages of their PhD and thinking about qualitative research.
Random insights (summary from different presentations/discussions):
- action research and case research are in the same continuum
- sad reality: it's not about designing your research and selecting ideal cases, it's about making sound research from what you can access
- finding/selecting cases
- getting cases
- finishing a survey with "are you prepared to talk more about it?" to initiate contact
- networking, exploiting oportunities, via alumni
- starting slow and then asking for more
- "it's a selling exercise"
- negotiate with a company: goals, methods, reporting, control, confidentiality
- keep your commitment even if they don't (e.g. by being on time or sending promised results)
- initiating "back up" case contacts (if the primary one stops in the middle)
- design and interpretation
- importance of keeping field notebook
- the idea of tape-recording discussions between researchers to keep track of developing interpretations
- theory is a way of seeing [interpreting case]
- triangulation: not only data and methods, but also researcher, theory, methodology
- understand your equipment
- do not save on tapes and batteries
- do not switch after interview is over - you may hear interesting stories
- it takes 10 hours for professional to transcribe 1 hour of interview -> not transcribing, but annotating
- "more subjective" questions: asking at least two interviewees
- finding unexpected by asking "if you come to work tomorrow and disaster/miracle will happen, what would it be?"
- plan before lunch/at the end of the day to get more time in informal settings
- breaks between interviews to make notes
There was more for me in this course than I'm able to write: methodological and writing insights are more difficult to put in my own words. It was good for networking and also contributed to my survival from "PhD crisis" I had last couple of months :)