Getting in, getting on and getting out: reflections on a qualitative research project

Irvine, Helen J. & Gaffikin, Michael (2006) Getting in, getting on and getting out: reflections on a qualitative research project. Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, 19(1), pp. 115-145.

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This paper provides a behind-the-scenes view of how a qualitative research project was conducted. It is therefore a paper about the process of qualitative research from the point of view of a researcher, rather than a qualitative research paper about an organization. Its approach is both theoretical and reflective rather than being a description or analysis of what went on in the organization. Because the focus of the paper is personal rather than organizational, it does not offer "findings" about the way in which accounting is practised, but rather reflections and insights about the way research was conducted, from getting into the organization (getting in), conducting the research (getting on) and finally exiting the organization (getting out). Even though this paper represents the reflections of one researcher conducting a qualitative study (and another coaching from the sidelines) in one unique organization, the experiences shared emphasize the need for flexibility, reflection and reflexivity in any qualitative research project. The intention of the authors is that this paper should be informative, but they do not view it as a manual of practice. It is hoped that it may help to prepare new researchers for what they may face as they conduct a qualitative research project, while at the same time providing resonances for experienced researchers. While much qualitative research has been undertaken within the discipline of accounting, little or no attention has been paid to the way in which that research has been conducted. This paper addresses that gap, in the hope that it will enlighten both experienced and new qualitative researchers.

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ID Code: 13049
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: case studies in accounting, qualitative research, ethnography, theory in qualitative research
DOI: 10.1108/09513570610651920
ISSN: 0951-3574
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > ACCOUNTING AUDITING AND ACCOUNTABILITY (150100) > Accounting Auditing and Accountability not elsewhere classified (150199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 Emerald Publishing
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 19 Mar 2008 00:00
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:42

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