This is the first sustained discussion of methodological issues in economic geography in the last twenty years. It comprises an extended discussion of qualitative and ethnographic methods; an assessment of quantitative and numerical methods; an examination of post-structuralist and feminist methodologies; an overview of case-study approaches; and an inquiry into the relation between economic geography and other disciplines. With short, accessible, and engaging chapters, this is a critical assessment of qualitative and quantitative methods in economic geography.

Economic Geography, by the Numbers?

Economic geography, by the numbers?

Quantification in Context

A common perception among contemporary economic geographers is that quantification is either dead or dying: an approach that is a historical curiosity, a remnant of a misguided attempt to replicate the methodological norms and practices of science (Johnston et al. 2003;Yeung 2003). As a social construction, an ‘ideal’ set of methodological norms and practices that we label ‘quantification’ is supposed to be derived from a failed and discredited social ontology and epistemology, grounded, as it is, in the modernist project of positivism/empiricism (Johnston 2006). Following the publication of Andrew Sayer's (1984) highly influential Method in Social Science, someone practising quantitative economic geography is supposed to engage in ‘extensive’ research, employing large-scale survey and statistical ...

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