Use Of Case Study Method In Business Research

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This context led to a philosophical division in research approaches: those supporting positivism and quantitative approaches and those aligned with qualitative methods embedded in constructivist and interpretivist paradigms.

[] Antecedents of modern day case study research are most often cited as being conducted in the Chicago School of Sociology between the 1920-1950s (STEWART, 2014).

[] A second generation of case study researchers emerged with the advent of grounded theory methodology (GLASER & STRAUSS, 1967).

Grounded theory "merged qualitative field study methods from the Chicago School of Sociology with quantitative methods of data analysis" (JOHANSSON, 2003, p.8), resulting in an inductive methodology that used detailed systematic procedures to analyze data.

Here, anthropologists practiced their methods on university cultures or by conducting lengthy case studies involving field-based observations of groups with the aim of understanding their social and cultural lives (CRESWELL et al., 2007; JOHANSSON, 2003; STEWART, 2014).

Use Of Case Study Method In Business Research

Parallel to the use of case studies in anthropology, medicine and disciplines in the social sciences such as sociology, education and political science also embraced case study as a form of inquiry (ANTHONY & JACK, 2009; BROWN, 2008; CRESWELL et al., 2007; GEORGE & BENNETT, 2005; GERRING, 2004; SIMONS, 2009; YIN, 2014).Historical examples of case study stem as far back as the early nineteenth century with the biography of Charles DARWIN (STEWART, 2014).Most attribute the origins of case study research to studies undertaken in anthropology and social sciences in the early twentieth century when lengthy, detailed ethnographic studies of individuals and cultures were conducted using this design (JOHANSSON, 2003, MERRIAM, 2009; SIMONS, 2009; STEWART, 2014).Central to these variations is the underpinning ontological and epistemological orientations of those involved in the evolution of case study research.Researchers who have contributed to the development of case study research come from diverse disciplines and their philosophical underpinnings have created variety and diversity in approaches used.Change and progress have stemmed from parallel influences of historical transformations in approaches to research and individual researcher's preferences, perspectives, and interpretations of this design.Researchers who have contributed to the development of case study research come from diverse disciplines with different philosophical perspectives, resulting in a variety of definitions and approaches.Consequently, various designs have been proposed for preparing, planning, and conducting case study research with advice on key considerations for achieving success.As a result, while case study research has evolved to be a pragmatic, flexible research approach, the variation in definition, application, validity, and purposefulness can create a confusing platform for its use.[] Similarly, the uptake of case study research in the political sciences, particularly during the 1980's and 1990’s, led to a more integrated methodological approach with the aim of theoretical development and testing (GEORGE & BENNETT, 2005).The integration of formal, statistical, and narrative methods in a single study, combined with the use of empirical methods for case selection and causal inference, demonstrated the versatility of case study design and made a significant contribution to its methodological evolution (ibid.).

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