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Accepted Paper:

Digital methods in qualitative secondary research. Promises and pitfalls of digital methods in expanding research processes  
Lina Franken (University of Vechta)

Short abstract:

Re-using research data is promising regarding filtering and comparison in combining computational and qualitative methods. The agency the data itself invoke is relevant here. Combining the perspectives to extended mixed methods approaches needs to be reflected regarding epistemological changes.

Long abstract:

Digital Methods are connected to STS and to the growing interdisciplinary field of Digital Humanities. There, the focus lies on quantitative approaches to closed corpora, often retro-digitized historical source material used for computational approaches. Qualitative perspectives are seldomly taken into account. Nevertheless, especially the re-use of available research data is promising, since one can find a huge rage of e.g. qualitative interview transcripts in repositories that make new comparative perspectives possible. Digital methods are promising in two directions: (1) filtering for relevant data and (2) comparing different datasets and thereby facilitate the use of larger corpora in qualitative settings.

No matter how well-elaborated computational methods are, qualitative research will always change the focus to a rather in-depths analysis of smaller parts of the corpus. The different agencies the data themselves invoke, when not being gathered in the field by researchers interpreting them, form an additional layer of how the digital processing of data influences researchers and their questions asked. Statements based on this are therefore constructed and limited in specific dimensions.

A major chance lies in combining approaches within the analysis. Methods can inform each other and through combining computational approaches with qualitative inquiry, the research question can be answered with a deeper understanding and on a broad basis of data, developing new and extended mixed methods approaches. Epistemological changes need to be taken into account.

The talk will argue for a development of digital methods for the re-use of qualitative interview transcripts, based on ongoing research and its reflection.

Traditional Open Panel P162
Qualitative digital methods: transforming methodologies
  Session 1 Friday 19 July, 2024, -