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David Wästerfors

Qualitative researchers often need observations of people, their actions and settings, but apart from that general direction it is hard to pinpoint a superior kind of observational data. What to observe, and how, depends on the project. In this chapter I will try to show how the preferable kind of observations is a highly varied category. Then I will argue that there are still particular and quite fundamental qualities to strive for, even though every project is distinctive in its character. But first, let me start with the general aims of observations, the theoretical assumptions of the approach and its historical background.


What social scientists typically aim for when making observations is to gather data on groups and people in ...

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