Ethnography Versus Case Study ‐ Positioning Research and Researchers

Julie White (La Trobe University)
Sarah Drew (University of Melbourne)
Trevor Hay (University of Melbourne)

Qualitative Research Journal

ISSN: 1443-9883

Publication date: 6 April 2009


In this paper we narrate a story of working on a large project funded by an Australian Research Council Linkage grant the ‘Keeping Connected: Young People, Identity and Schooling’ project. The purpose of the study is to consider the social connection and schooling of young people who have experienced long‐term chronic illness. While the research involves both quantitative and qualitative elements, the qualitative component is the largest and involves the most researcher time and diversity. At an early stage of the project, three of the researchers working on the qualitative team consider why the study was framed as a series of case studies rather than as ethnography. The second issue considered in this paper is the different approaches to data collection, data analysis and truth claims we might take.



White, J., Drew, S. and Hay, T. (2009), "Ethnography Versus Case Study ‐ Positioning Research and Researchers", Qualitative Research Journal, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 18-27.

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