Decolonizing Qualitative Research: Non-traditional Reporting Forms in the Academy


  • Elsa M. González y González Texas A&M University
  • Yvonna S. Lincoln Texas A&M University



qualitative research, cross-cultural work, cross-language work, decolonizing the academy, reporting forms


Qualitative researchers have assumed that cross-cultural work required deep understanding of the culture being reported on. Even earlier, cross-cultural work focused on "receiving contexts," and on end-users who were primarily Western. The utility of such studies is severely limited, however, in a globalized world, and studies undertaken now must serve the interests of not only Western scholars, but also the needs of nationals and locals (or indigenous peoples). Research conducted in different languages, non-Western contexts and different cultures becomes more problematic and understanding intrinsic issues more urgent with the increasing number of reports (such as dissertations) conducted by international scholars and thus bear potential for decolonizing the academy. Conducting and reporting cross-cultural qualitative data focuses on understanding at least five major ideas: working with bilingual data, considering non-Western cultural traditions, multiple perspectives, multi-vocal & multi-lingual texts, and technical issues to insure accessibility. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs060418


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Author Biographies

Elsa M. González y González, Texas A&M University

Elsa M. GONZÁLEZ Y GONZÁLEZ is Research Associate in the department of Educational Administration and Human Resources at Texas A&M University, where she works as a co-manager editor of the Handbook of Qualitative Research (3rd ed.) and the Encyclopedia of Sociology. She obtained her doctoral degree from Texas A&M University. Her dissertation was designed to find competencies of higher education senior administrators in Mexico. Her research interests include higher education leadership, methodological issues in cross-language qualitative data analysis, and women in higher education.

Yvonna S. Lincoln, Texas A&M University

Yvonna S. LINCOLN is Ruth Harrington Chair of Educational Leadership and University Distinguished Professor of Higher Education at Texas A&M University. She is the coauthor of Naturalistic Inquiry and Fourth Generation Evaluation; she is currently the coeditor of Qualitative Inquiry, a journal devoted to methodological explorations of qualitative methods, and also co-editor of the first, second, and third editions of the Handbook of Qualitative Research. Her research interests include the intellectual histories and origins of the paradigm revolution, and faculty intellectual life more generally, as well as program evaluation and media effects on public perceptions of higher education.




How to Cite

González y González, E. M., & Lincoln, Y. S. (2006). Decolonizing Qualitative Research: Non-traditional Reporting Forms in the Academy. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 7(4).



Autobiographical, Historical, and Current Perspectives