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From graph paper to
digital research: our
Framework journey
Kandy Woodfield
Director of Learning
NatCen Social Research
©N...
Overview
 NatCen Social Research – who we are and what we do
 Qualitative research in applied social policy research
 F...
We’re here
because social
research has the
power to make life
better
4
The areas we specialise in
Research at NatCen
Deliberative
Understanding the context
“(Funders) have certain requirements of the
research they commission… that evidence is
systemati...
Shifting sands in applied social
policy research
Long struggle for credibility, by 2012:
61% of commissioned studies inclu...
The black box…
Our approach
 Applied vs. purely theoretical
 Draws on varied traditions to
meet requirements of clients
Characterised b...
Learning curves with QDAS
10
The Tippex years
1980s
Late 1990s
2008
2011
11
Aim of analysis - analytical outputs
Categories of things (mapping, description, thematic analysis)
• Reasons for gambling...
What is Framework?
Framework - a tool not a method
In substantive tradition, concerned with:
 capturing and interpreting meanings in the dat...
15
16
Objectives of data management
Primary objectives
Re-order tangled
discourse
Make data
accessible
Secondary objectives
Redu...
Key features
 Case and theme based approach (to enable
cross & within case analysis)
 Reduces data through summarisation...
Framework - case and theme based
Name
1.1 Nature of crime 1.2 Setting /locale 1.3 Impact on
day to day life
JohnJohn
Ellen...
Value of Framework matrix output
 Data displayed in descriptive ‘chunks’
aids enquiry-focussed intepretation
 Matrix pre...
Limitations
 Time and labour intensive
 Danger of becoming process rather than outcome
focused (as with coding)
 Need t...
Outline
25
 In 2006 we tried again
 Commissioned Cordsoft & experienced project
manager
 Followed a rigorous approach to PM and...
Developing software
 Huge respect for software developers in this field
 Development forced us to reappraise what Framew...
29
Benefits of using software
Practical – formatting and reliable handling of volumes of data
 Positions Framework alongs...
What impact?
30
I'm a fan of pen and paper;
getting post-its out &moving
them around; sharing
opinions etc. This isn't rea...
Key challenges
Time needed – learning and development
 Need champions and experts to support skills
development and growt...
Learning curves
32
The Tippex years
Where
next?
CAQDAS 2014 From graph paper to digital research our Framework journey
CAQDAS 2014 From graph paper to digital research our Framework journey
CAQDAS 2014 From graph paper to digital research our Framework journey
CAQDAS 2014 From graph paper to digital research our Framework journey
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CAQDAS 2014 From graph paper to digital research our Framework journey

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My presentation to the 2014 CAQDAS conference - From graph paper to digital research: our Framework journey.

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CAQDAS 2014 From graph paper to digital research our Framework journey

  1. 1. From graph paper to digital research: our Framework journey Kandy Woodfield Director of Learning NatCen Social Research ©NatCen Social Research 2014
  2. 2. Overview  NatCen Social Research – who we are and what we do  Qualitative research in applied social policy research  Framework and NatCen’s approach to QR  Big journeys begin with small steps - our Framework journey  The impact of QDAS on analysis 2
  3. 3. We’re here because social research has the power to make life better
  4. 4. 4 The areas we specialise in
  5. 5. Research at NatCen Deliberative
  6. 6. Understanding the context “(Funders) have certain requirements of the research they commission… that evidence is systematically generated and analysed, with interpretations that are well-founded and defensible and able to support wider inference. It also means that emphasis is placed on research findings which are accessibly presented and sufficiently focused to inform policy planning and implementation.” (Ritchie et al, 2014)
  7. 7. Shifting sands in applied social policy research Long struggle for credibility, by 2012: 61% of commissioned studies included qualitative elements -  18 used only/mainly qualitative methods  A further 35 used a combination of qual/quant Almost routine use of qualitative approaches in evaluation (Jago, 2014 forthcoming) 7
  8. 8. The black box…
  9. 9. Our approach  Applied vs. purely theoretical  Draws on varied traditions to meet requirements of clients Characterised by: 9  Critical or subtle realism (e.g. Robson, 2002; Hammersley,1992)  Interpretivism  Pragmatism  Use of Framework for qual data management  Reflexivity  Rigour  Inferential status
  10. 10. Learning curves with QDAS 10 The Tippex years 1980s Late 1990s 2008 2011
  11. 11. 11
  12. 12. Aim of analysis - analytical outputs Categories of things (mapping, description, thematic analysis) • Reasons for gambling • Sources of debt advice • Attitudes to the environment Categories of people or processes (typologies) •Types of gambler •Types of school programmes •Grant application processes Why people do or think what they do (explanatory analysis) •Factors influencing how people feel about income in retirement •What helps achieve positive outcomes from an employment programme Theory development
  13. 13. What is Framework?
  14. 14. Framework - a tool not a method In substantive tradition, concerned with:  capturing and interpreting meanings in the data  focusing on what the text says “Data are treated as windows on the participants’ social world, referring to and representing feelings, perceptions and events.” (Ritchie et al, 2014) Framework meant to assist in the ordering of data to facilitate interpretation
  15. 15. 15
  16. 16. 16
  17. 17. Objectives of data management Primary objectives Re-order tangled discourse Make data accessible Secondary objectives Reduce data volume Prioritise questions
  18. 18. Key features  Case and theme based approach (to enable cross & within case analysis)  Reduces data through summarisation & synthesis  Matrix display of summarised data  Retains links to original data  Output allows comprehensive and transparent data analysis
  19. 19. Framework - case and theme based Name 1.1 Nature of crime 1.2 Setting /locale 1.3 Impact on day to day life JohnJohn Ellen Paul Chart 2: Making contact with Police Chart 3: Experiences of police help and support Chart 4: Impact of engagement with Police Chart 1: Exp. of crime How do you choose your themes? What goes in the cells?
  20. 20. Value of Framework matrix output  Data displayed in descriptive ‘chunks’ aids enquiry-focussed intepretation  Matrix preserves context - aids search for explanation  Links btwn cognitive processes & visual display  Data organised, but reduced  Encourages display of diversity  Great for teamwork Systematic Comprehensive Transparent Analytical process is ...
  21. 21. Limitations  Time and labour intensive  Danger of becoming process rather than outcome focused (as with coding)  Need to be reflexive and critical – not forcing square pegs into round hole  Not great for exploring narratives or linguistics on it’s own
  22. 22. Outline
  23. 23. 25  In 2006 we tried again  Commissioned Cordsoft & experienced project manager  Followed a rigorous approach to PM and development  Specified what we wanted to the software to do, how and why  In 2008 we launched our own software
  24. 24. Developing software  Huge respect for software developers in this field  Development forced us to reappraise what Framework was and was for  What do we do and why?  What would we like to be able to do better?  Adopt a more methodologically flexible approach now vs tightly controlled  Development work made us reappraise where Framework sits alongside other tools and raised the quality of our methodological discussions
  25. 25. 29 Benefits of using software Practical – formatting and reliable handling of volumes of data  Positions Framework alongside other approaches to data management  Eases tension between abstraction to get perspective and remaining close to the data  Analysts given back freedom to choose whatever approach suits their research study – plurality  Aids creativity by supporting iteration up and down the analytical ladder from descriptive to theory building  Keeps pace with technological change i.e. social media data
  26. 26. What impact? 30 I'm a fan of pen and paper; getting post-its out &moving them around; sharing opinions etc. This isn't really something that you're able to do when working in any CAQDAS but that I feel can give an added benefit to thinking creatively in qual analysis. It is not a substitute for thinking! With NVivo I don't have to stick so rigidly to the model, but can adapt different techniques depending on the needs of a particular project. I think there's a lot of functionality people aren’t using. Framework can make you more creative in the interpretative stage of analysis because it allows you more time to analyse, and it allows you to compare cases effectively while making sure not to get lost in the details.
  27. 27. Key challenges Time needed – learning and development  Need champions and experts to support skills development and growth Getting people beyond the core functionality  limited uses of advanced features like visualization, queries to develop creativity in the search for explanations and understanding Encouraging creative and intelligent use of the tools available Horizon scanning 31
  28. 28. Learning curves 32 The Tippex years Where next?

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