Case Study Vs Grounded Theory

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Case Study vs Grounded Theory: What's the Difference?

When it comes to research methods, there are many to choose from. Two popular methods are case studies and grounded theory. But what are the differences between these two approaches? In this blog post, we'll explore the differences between case study and grounded theory and how to choose the right approach for your research project.

What is a Case Study?

A case study is an in-depth exploration of a single person, group, event, or situation. It involves gathering information from a variety of sources including interviews, documents, and observations. The researcher uses the data to gain an understanding of the situation and draw conclusions.

Case studies are particularly useful in exploring complex issues and developing new theories. They can also be used to test existing theories or to identify patterns in a particular situation.

What is Grounded Theory?

Grounded theory is an approach to research that seeks to generate new theories from data collected through systematic observation, interviewing, and analysis. The researcher begins with a few broad questions and then collects data to refine the questions and develop a theory.

Unlike a case study, grounded theory is not focused on a single person, group, or situation. Instead, it seeks to identify patterns and relationships in a variety of data. The researcher then uses the data to develop a theory about the phenomena under study.

Which Method Should You Choose?

When deciding which method to use for your research project, consider the type of information you need and the research question you are trying to answer. If you need to gain an in-depth understanding of a single person, group, or situation, then a case study may be the right approach. If you need to identify patterns or relationships between different elements, then grounded theory may be a better approach.

Conclusion

Case studies and grounded theory are both valuable research methods that can provide valuable insights into complex issues. However, the most appropriate approach for your research project depends on the type of information you need and the research question you are trying to answer.

References

- Attride-Stirling, J. (2001). Thematic networks: An analytic tool for qualitative research. Qualitative Research, 1(3), 385-405.

- Bryant, A. & Charmaz, K. (Eds). (2007). The SAGE Handbook of Grounded Theory. Los Angeles: SAGE Publications.

- Corbin, J., & Strauss, A. (2014). Basics of Qualitative Research: Techniques and Procedures for Developing Grounded Theory (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

- Creswell, J. W. (2007). Qualitative inquiry and research design: Choosing among five approaches (2nd ed). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

- Eisenhardt, K. M. (1989). Building theories from case study research. The Academy of Management Review, 14(4), 532-550.

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