Innovator Article

Hands-on Qualitative Methods Workshop Builds Scholars’ Skills

by Jacqueline Romo

A select group of 24 U.S. and international scholars attended an intensive, three-day Qualitative Methods Workshop at the Graduate School of Management in July. The workshop drew both professors and doctoral students, many with little or no experience in qualitative methods, but wanting to learn how to augment their research. Others came to improve their methodological approach and review best practices in the field.

The event, spearheaded by Associate Professor Beth Bechky and co-organized with Professor Kimberly Elsbach and Professor Andrew Hargadon, immersed the participants in a hands-on team project to give them both a conceptual and practical understanding of qualitative research methods.

“I was impressed by how approachable, engaged and practical Professors Bechky, Elsbach and Hargadon were,” said Associate Professor Oana Branzei of the Richard Ivey School of Business in Ontario, Canada. “It was great to have these extraordinary qualitative researchers, who are at the top of their field, provide us with hands-on training and advice.”

“Doing the research on-site in Davis motivated us to collaborate with each other regardless of our stature as a professor or graduate student—it was an equalizing experience,” said Tiona Zuzul, a doctoral candidate in the strategy program at Harvard Business School.

With high interest from many other scholars, Bechky and Elsbach are planning a second workshop for summer 2012.

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