Qualitative Content Analysis: Disciplinary Perspectives and Relationships between Methods—Introduction to the FQS Special Issue "Qualitative Content Analysis II"


  • Margrit Schreier Jacobs University Bremen gGmbh
  • Markus Janssen Pädagogische Hochschule Weingarten
  • Christoph Stamann Pädagogische Hochschule Karlsruhe
  • Amanda Whittal Bocconi University
  • Thomas Dahl Norwegian University of Science and Technology




qualitative content analysis, mixed methods, qualitative research methods, educational research, subjective theories, grounded theory methodology, case studies, qualitative data analysis


In this article, we introduce Part II of the special issue on qualitative content analysis (QCA). To begin with, we provide a short summary of the rationale underlying both parts of the special issue and present some core conclusions based on Part I. Whereas in Part I we combined contributions by authors taking an inside perspective on QCA, focusing on conceptualizations of the method as well as challenges in applying it, in Part II we put together articles by authors who take more of an outside view. Like Part I, Part II is divided into two sections. In the first section, papers are presented in which QCA is employed in different disciplines. It can be seen that methodological requirements vary between disciplines, and that this results in different ways of using and adapting QCA. In the second section are contributions in which the relationship between QCA and other methods / approaches is examined or illustrated. Comparisons are made between QCA and Grounded Theory Methodology only, whereas combinations can be found with a variety of methods / approaches. We end by summarizing our main conclusions concerning the goals we pursued with this special issue, and highlighting some open questions and suggestions for future methodological discussion and development of QCA.


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Author Biographies

Margrit Schreier, Jacobs University Bremen gGmbh

Margrit SCHREIER is adjunct professor at Jacobs University Bremen. In her research, she focuses on qualitative research methods and methodology, mixed methods, media psychology, sensory processing sensitivity, and health-related topics.

Markus Janssen, Pädagogische Hochschule Weingarten

Markus JANSSEN is a teaching and research assistant and PhD candidate at the University of Education Weingarten. He primarily works in the field of initial teacher education and is chair of the interpretation group/ research workshop on qualitative content analysis at Weingarten University.

Christoph Stamann, Pädagogische Hochschule Karlsruhe

Christoph STAMANN has been an academic staff member in educational science at the University of Education Weingarten until September 18, 2019. He and Markus JANSSEN were responsible for the research workshop on qualitative content analysis. Since September, 2019, he works as academic staff member at the University of Education in Karlsruhe, within the BMBF funded research and development project LemaS.

Amanda Whittal, Bocconi University

Amanda WHITTAL is a health psychologist and research associate at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy, and the Institut für Allgemeinmedizin (ifam) in Düsseldorf, Germany. Her main research interests are in the fields of health policy and decision making for rare disease treatments, self-care and health behavior change interventions, and cultural influences on health. In her work she applies qualitative methods including content analysis, observational study, interviews, as well as mixed methods.

Thomas Dahl, Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Thomas DAHL holds a PhD in science studies from Roskilde University Centre, Denmark. He worked as assistant professor at Department of Technology Studies (1994-1996) and Department of Philosophy (1996-98) at the University of Trondheim, before working as researcher and head of research at SINTEF (1998-2012), an independent research organization in Norway. Since 2012 he has been a professor in organization and management at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.




How to Cite

Schreier, M., Janssen, M., Stamann, C., Whittal, A., & Dahl, T. (2020). Qualitative Content Analysis: Disciplinary Perspectives and Relationships between Methods—Introduction to the FQS Special Issue "Qualitative Content Analysis II". Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 21(1). https://doi.org/10.17169/fqs-21.1.3454



Qualitative Content Analysis II

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