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The role and status of qualitative methods in management research: an empirical account

Cassell, Catherine and Symon, Gillian and Buehring, Anna and Johnson, Phil (2006) The role and status of qualitative methods in management research: an empirical account. Management decision, 44 (2). pp. 290-303. ISSN 0025-1747

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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present a piece of empirical work that investigates the current role and status of qualitative research within the management field. Design/methodology/approach – The research is based on 45 in-depth qualitative interviews with members of a range of different stakeholder groups, including: journal editors; qualitative researchers; Doctoral Programme Leaders; practitioners; and those who fund qualitative management research. Findings – The findings suggest that there is considerable variety in definitions of qualitative research; that there are still a number of issues surrounding the status and credibility of qualitative research within the field; and there is a need for greater access to researcher training in this area. Practical implications – The paper is of practical interest to qualitative researchers in that it details some of the issues surrounding publishing qualitative work. Originality/value – The paper presents original empirical work in this field.

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