Qualitative researchers utilize comparative and case-based methods to develop theory through elaboration or abduction. They pursue research in intermediate fields where some but not all relevant constructs are known (Edmonson & McManus, 2007). When cases and comparisons move beyond a few, it threatens researchers with information overload. Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) is a novel method of analysis that is appropriate for larger case or comparative studies and provides a flexible tool for theory elaboration and abduction. Building on recently published exemplars from organizational research, we illuminate three key benefits of QCA: (1) allows researchers to examine cases as wholes, effectively addressing the complexity of action embedded in organizational phenomena; (2) provides indicators of whether results are reliable and valid so qualitative researchers, and others, can assess their findings within a study and across studies; and (3) explores potentially overlooked connections between qualitative and quantitative research.
|Title of host publication||Handbook of Qualitative Research|
|Subtitle of host publication||Innovative Pathways and Methods|
|Editors||Kimberly Elsbach, Roderick Kramer|
|Place of Publication||New York and London|
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - 19 Nov 2015|