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International Issues in Case Studies


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Carolyn Luttrell

Published in: Technology, Business
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International Issues in Case Studies

  1. 1. International Issues in Case StudiesCarolyn LuttrellSTC-PMC AnnualConferenceMarch 28, 2009
  2. 2. What is a case study? Story about something unique, special, or interesting One way of doing research One way of marketing a product Way to add credibility to sale One method of presenting a situation One way to relate your needs to someone else’sneeds One way to show problem, solution, and results
  3. 3. Who does them? Corporations Non-profits Non-governmental organizations Educational institutions Students (dissertations)
  4. 4. Where are they used? Professional trade shows Professional publications Magazines Textbooks
  5. 5. Advantages Documented information In scholarly papers, present data frommultiple methods (surveys, interviews,document review, and observation) Thorough, complete story (generally) Real-life examples (more memorable/tangible because they are a story)
  6. 6. Disadvantages Can be shallow Can be biased Can lack rigor (academic point of view) Overgeneralization (few examples withoutevidence that they are representative of thepopulation)
  7. 7. What are the characteristics? Focus on one issue! Real life situation/study Present a picture Illustrate theory and application in classroomsetting
  8. 8. What formats do they take? Brochures Articles Dissertations/theses
  9. 9. Why are they important?• Present documentation about a particularsubject
  10. 10. How are they done? Identify the problem Identify the steps undertaken to address the problem Discuss results What were the challenges and how were they met? What was learned? Are results sustainable (why or why not)? Conclusion
  11. 11. Data collection All data about the case is gathered Data is organized into an approach tohighlight the focus of the study A case study narrative is developed The narrative might be validated by reviewfrom program participants Case studies might be cross-compared toisolate any themes or patterns
  12. 12. Who writes them? Marketers Technical writers Sociologists Scientists Students
  13. 13. What makes a good case study? Pictures/graphs/charts Well-written text (clear, to the point, persuasive, nojargon) Appropriate length (four pages maximum forcommercial case studies) Color Professional looking If from an organization, uniform design Good layout
  14. 14. What are some international case studyissues? Translation Cultural taboos Cultural relevance Cultural concern Appropriateness of document for audience Might need to localize for audience (get a localization firm to dothis)– Note: No matter what part of the world you’re in, a client will beinterested in something if he/she can relate to it. For example, apetrochemical company with a particular problem will be interestedin reading about a petrochemical company with a similar problemand solution, no matter where in the world it happened.
  15. 15. Activity Some examples of international case studies What makes them good or bad case studies? Will they work in another culture? Why? Why not?
  16. 16. Issues Consent forms Signoffs Multiple reviewers – fraught with peril especially if reviewersare not working in their native language Translation Localization Intellectual property – may require a signoff from the legaldepartment Use of taping Confidentiality Units of measurement
  17. 17. Questions?