The Futures of Qualitative Social Research

Reiner Keller


In this contribution I begin by reviewing past views on the future of qualitative social research. In different ways, all of these views give the same account of a problematic present state which must be overcome by following their own particular "mandatory directives" for future developments. I then discuss four structural mechanisms from which current problems in the transmission of qualitative and interpretative designs or approaches originate. Recently, supporters of "post-qualitative research" have addressed such problems by arguing for a form of strong theorism in qualitative social research. However, this type of response can lead back to an outdated dominance of theory over research and empirical substance. In conclusion, some alternative options for navigating qualitative and interpretative research through post-positivist waters are discussed.



interpretation; ethnography; epistemic culture; post-qualitative; qualitative methods; critiques; teaching; post-positivism


Copyright (c) 2014 Reiner Keller

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