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Journal Article

Strategies for Gaining Access in Doing Fieldwork: Reflection of two Researchers  pp25-34

Satirenjit Kaur Johl, Sumathi Renganathan

© Sep 2010 Volume 8 Issue 1, Editor: Ann Brown, pp1 - 62

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Abstract

One of greatest pitfalls in conducting research successfully is the inability to obtain access to the research field. Obtaining access to the research field can vary to a considerable extent, depending on the kind of cases being investigated. In fact, researchers often spend considerable amount of time on this task. However, many researchers do not even describe their access to the research field in their research reports. The main aim of this paper is to share the experiences of two researchers in gaining access to fieldwork practice. We believe that the issues we discuss based on our experiences in gaining access would benefit other qualitative researchers. We also hope that comparing the experiences of two different researchers in two very different research fields would help highlight issues which are often neglected in doing qualitative research. In this paper, we present our comparison of the different approaches we used in the various stages in gaining access. We discuss our strategies in gaining access using a four stage model: pre‑entry, during fieldwork, after fieldwork and getting back. Finally, we present a basic framework for gaining access successfully which other researchers can use, and also critically analyze our experiences in using the two different approaches, formal and personal, in gaining access in our respective research projects.

 

Keywords: gaining access, ethnography, gatekeepers, fieldwork, mixed method

 

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Journal Article

Towards a More Holistic Understanding of Whole Organizational Networks: Anthropological Approaches in Evolving Markets  pp74-84

Nicola Mountford, Threase Kessie

© Oct 2017 Volume 15 Issue 2, Editor: Ann Brown, pp57 - 141

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Abstract

As markets become increasingly complex it is more and more important that we understand their underlying market networks. While much research has been conducted into the inter‑relationships and impacts between the firm and the network, less attention has been paid to the study of the whole network itself. Understanding the origins, structures, and potential futures of whole market networks is vital to the understanding of whole markets. This is particularly the case in light of the multiplicity of societal and institutional conditions attached to an increasingly globalized economy. The insertion of technology into incumbent markets such as finance or healthcare causes market and network evolutions that firms must understand if they are to navigate them safely. Traditional business research methods are, however, often locked to the firm perspective through case study approaches, or quantitative network analyses. Despite some recent methods that take a more situated, biographical approach, a bird’s eye view of the whole network remains elusive. Anthropological methods offer assistance ‑ both in making sense of the evolution of the network within the market context, and in understanding the intricacies of such networks. Unfortunately, the concept of network analysis remains disconnected across disciplines apart from some exceptions such as Berthod, Grothe‑Hammer and Sydow’s (2016) combining of social network analysis with ethnographic research methods to produce ‘Network Ethnographies.’ We build on that approach, combining market network research methods with ethnographic research methods, illustrated through case examples from our research in the connected health domain. We illustrate ethnography’s potential for in‑depth capture of network detail, showing how ethnographic methods can be used to understand each player’s position and function within that system, as well as reflecting the life and culture of the whole network.

 

Keywords: whole networks, inter-organizational networks, evolving markets, connected health, network ethnography, anthropological research methods.

 

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Journal Article

Finding My Intuitive Researcher’s Voice Through Reflexivity: An Autoethnographic Study  pp56-66

Natalie Cunningham, Teresa Carmichael

© Jul 2018 Volume 16 Issue 2, Intuitive Researcher, Editor: Jocene Vallack, pp55 - 102

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Abstract

Using autoethnography as a method and looking back to and writing about my experience (in the first person) as a relatively inexperienced researcher completing her PhD in a business school environment, I share critical moments of my research journey. The context in which I was conducting the research was a business school environment in the subject area of executive coaching. Executive coaching is a relatively new and emerging field in contrast to the many other fields in business, such as finance and economics. We comment on the role reflexivity played in facilitating identity formation as a researcher. Reflexivity is the ability to explore, reflect on and examine social and contextual issues that impact on research. Combining reflexivity with the aim of ethnography, which is to study common and shared experiences for purposes of understanding the cultural implications of these social and contextual issues, I reflect on how the academic structure, systems and processes were an inhibitor to finding my voice. I share how reflexivity was a major contributing factor to increasing confidence in my own identity as a researcher. I examine and analyse the aspects of reflexivity that facilitated this growth in my confidence and how this experience might facilitate the same empowerment in other researchers. The paper looks at approaches to creating a reflexive culture of research drawing on Finlay’s typology of reflexivity. One example of this typology is collective reflexivity in which more than one voice is heard. This paper is co‑authored with my supervisor, and her reflections are included. Collaborative reflexivity assists in addressing some of the validity concerns of only one voice. This paper will assist not only novice researchers but also the practice of research – providing a way of not just “doing” research but “being” a researcher.

 

Keywords: Reflexivity, autoethnography, intuition, academic environment, researcher identity, research supervisor, PhD student

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 8 Issue 1 / Sep 2010  pp1‑62

Editor: Ann Brown

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Editorial

This Journal publishes papers that offer new insights into or practical help with the application of research methods applied to business organizations. The five papers in this issue offer the management researcher help and support with an eclectic mixture of topics relating to the application of existing tools and methods.

They are of an impressive quality testifying to the continuing intense interest in the research process as it is applied to business organizations. The wide range of topics demonstrates the current extraordinary dynamism in this subject as researchers grapple with the epistemological problems inherent in the various methodologies that are currently being applied to business research.

The paper by Alexandrov give an in depth analysis of existing measures, drawing on empirical work to support their recommendations. Alexandrov gives researchers an excellent assessment of the Likert scale‑ its strengths and weaknesses and a guide to how and when to use it. Interestingly the paper by Lawrence also addresses SME operations, this time with respect to the reasons for using or not using the Internet. This paper offers a detailed description of an empirical study using a grounded theory methodology which sought to explain the reasons for adoption or non adoption. The value for management researchers lies in the careful description of the empirical work and the evaluation of its quality using criteria established for interpretivist research. The fourth paper to draw on empirical work is that by Johl and Renganathan. This paper offers the researcher valuable insights into the effects of taking different approaches to obtaining access to case sites.

The paper by Berard critiques existing literature on the building and application of Systems Dynamics models. Of the two main approaches for developing such models by individual experts or by groups composed of both experts in the technique and individuals knowledgeable about the situation being modeled, she focuses on the group approach. Her critique of the literature establishes an excellent template for good practice. Any group setting out to build an SD model would be well advised to read this paper closely.

The paper by Green et al is theoretical and addresses a subject of key importance to all management researchers. The authors develop a fascinating argument as to the inconsistencies of the scientific method especially when applied to organizational research. They dispute the prevailing view that theory and methodology can be independent under any circumstances and would argue that theories are the creation of us the current community of researchers  As they propose an organizational truth produced by organizational science provides far more insight into what is persuasive to organizational scholars and their audiences, than it does into the features of organizations that scientists anthropomorphically deemed salient  As researchers of business organizations, we are all affected by the dominant community views more than we may like to accept.

Ann Brown
September, 2010

 

Keywords: case study, decision-making scenarios, ethnography, fieldwork, gaining access, gatekeepers, group model building, interpretive research, IS evaluation, Likert scale, marketing priority, methodological frameworks, mixed method, modelling process, negatively-worded items, performance measures, positivism, reversed items, rhetoric, semiotics theory, single-item measures, system dynamics, systematic analysis

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 15 Issue 2 / Oct 2017  pp57‑141

Editor: Ann Brown

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Editorial

ec6b0d90e60fa8dcfba4e184b3080a78Dr Ann Brown is a Senior Lecturer in Information Management in the Faculty of Management at Cass Business School and Associate Dean for the Undergraduate programme. She took an MSc (Operational Research) at LSE while working at the British Steel Corporation as an Operational Researcher. She obtained her doctorate from City University in 2005, based on her work into the problems and potential of Information Systems applications to create Business Value for organisations. She supports a number of IS academic conferences through her work as a member of conference committees. She was a member of the editorial panel for Information and Management until 2008. Her research spans the exploitation of IS in organisations, the application of qualitative research methods and the impact of non traditional Teaching and Learning methods on student achievement, such as activity based learning. 

 

Keywords: qualitative, methodology, saturation, sampling, interview, coding, gerund, data analysis, constructivist grounded theory, whole networks, inter-organizational networks, evolving markets, connected health, network ethnography, anthropological research methods, insider action research, researching entrepreneurship, digital entrepreneurship, Psychogeography, focus groups, career success, gender, qualitative research, corporate culture, CQR, qualitative methods, management research, document analysis, semi-structured interviews, Delphi, Delphi method characteristics, Delphi method variants, Information systems research, Taxonomy, Taxonomy development, Phenomenology, Arts Research, Qualitative Methodology, Alchemy Methodology, arts-based research, Husserl

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 16 Issue 2, Intuitive Researcher / Jul 2018  pp55‑102

Editor: Jocene Vallack

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Editorial

Guest Editor

Dr Jocene Vallack, formerly an actor, writer, director and Drama teacher, she has lectured in Research Methods at universities in Australia, and also as a volunteer in Tanzania. She has held a research fellowship at Central Queensland University, and has worked in Academic Development. She now enjoys teaching Arts Education at James Cook University.

 

Keywords: Reflexivity, autoethnography, intuition, academic environment, researcher identity, research supervisor, PhD student, Human centred design, service design, design research methods, design thinking, arts-informed research, wicked problems, commercial design, arts-based research, mixed-methods, philosophy, triangulation, triage, Arts-Based Research Methods, Theatre as Research Methodology, Qualitative research, Performance Text, Ethnodrama, Poetic transcription, visual displays, visual culture, hermeneutics, narrative inquiry, art education

 

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