Innovations in qualitative methods: The challenge of studying contemporary innovation in qualitative methods

Wiles, Rose and Bengry-Howell, Andrew and Crow, Graham and Nind, Melanie (2011) Innovations in qualitative methods: The challenge of studying contemporary innovation in qualitative methods. In: European Sociological Association, 7-10th September, 2011, Geneva. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Researching innovation in research methods presents a number of challenges, such as how to define innovation, how to assess the usefulness of an innovation, how to identify the person or people behind an innovation, and how to explore the factors which enable some innovations, but not others, to ‘take off’ and become established as credible. Our presentation reports on an on-going study of innovation in qualitative methods. Drawing on case study material of three innovators who make claims for the development of three different innovations in qualitative methods, we explore the nature of the claims being made, the uptake of the methods or methodological approaches across disciplines, and the social processes leading to the development and legitimation of these methodological innovations. In this presentation we are particularly interested in discussing the nature of the claims for methodological distinctiveness that are made, the strategies used to market and promote uptake of the method by other researchers, the role of champions in legitimating the method, the ways in which control and ownership of the method in its pure form are maintained, and the importance of the social and cultural context in influencing what innovations ‘take off’. More broadly we are interested in the ways that trends in research reporting have encouraged the proliferation of claims for novelty and innovation in qualitative research methods. We argue that many claims to innovation in published papers in practice involve the adoption of existing innovative methods, adaptations to existing methods, or the transfer of methods from other disciplines. Our case studies exemplify some of the subtle processes in teasing out how innovation in methods is constructed.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects:4. Qualitative Data Handling and Data Analysis > 4.23 Qualitative Approaches (other)
ID Code:1853
Deposited By: NCRM users
Deposited On:01 Sep 2011 10:24
Last Modified:01 Sep 2011 10:24

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