The Electronic Journal of Business Research Methods provides perspectives on topics relevant to research in the field of business and management
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Journal Issue
Volume 2 Issue 2 / Jul 2003  pp47‑170

Editor: Arthur Money

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Conceptualising Participatory Action Research — Three Different Practices  pp47‑58

Stefan Cronholm, Göran Goldkuhl

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The Undergraduate Dissertation: Subject‑centred or Student‑centred?  pp59‑66

Tina Shadforth, Brendon Harvey

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Increasing business students' Confidence in Questioning the Validity and Reliability of their Research  pp67‑76

Teresa Smallbone, Sarah Quinton

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Multi‑perspective Management Research: Fusion or Confusion?  pp77‑84

Les Worrall

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Grounded Theory and the 'And' in Entrepreneurship Research  pp85‑94

David Douglas

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Using a Multimethod Approach to Research Enterprise Systems Implementations  pp95‑108

José Esteves, Joan Pastor

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Using the Glaserian Approach in Grounded Studies of Emerging Business Practices  pp109‑120

Walter Fernandez

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Issues in Online Focus Groups: Lessons Learned from an Empirical Study of Peer‑to‑Peer Filesharing System Users  pp121‑136

Jerald Hughes, Karl R. Lang

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Perspectives on Management Research Design and Orientation: Quandaries and Choices  pp137‑144

Beverley Jones

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A Researcher's Dilemma ‑ Philosophical and Methodological Pluralism  pp145‑154

Karl Knox

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Abstract

In many research textbooks the distinction between qualitative and quantitative research is inadvertently linked with philosophical perspectives. This in essence creates a mutually exclusive relationship between method and philosophy. Initially researchers are led to believe, from these textbooks, that research is neatly divided into mutually exclusive categories, these being quantitative and qualitative research and 'never the twain shall meet'. This divide is further strengthened with the inference that the relationship extends further; associating deduction with quantitative methods and similarly induction with qualitative methods. "What happens in most texts is that qualitative research methods and quantitative research methods are set against each other as polar opposites. (Crotty 1998, p19)". This paper argues that methodological pluralism is acceptable but what is not acceptable is philosophical pluralism. By naively linking methods and approaches to specific philosophy researchers and students may miss out on potentially innovative or creative data collection methods. Alternatively and more importantly by feeling tied or constrained by their philosophical stance to particular methods and approaches, associated with them by textbooks, they may in fact reduce the credibility, validity, and or significance of the research. There maybe an elective affinity between certain philosophies and methods but this should not necessarily constrain the methods chosen. 

 

Keywords: Methodology, Philosophy, Pluralism, Qualitative and Quantitative Methods

 

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From PostGrad to Professional: Useful tips for choosing and executing a doctoral thesis  pp155‑160

Sam Lubbe

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Historiography — A Neglected Research Method in Business and Management Studies  pp161‑170

John O'Brien, Dan Remenyi, Aideen Keaney

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