Methods News

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Methods News aims to cover methodological developments in the social sciences and beyond, across all disciplines and sectors. Our articles include news stories from NCRM and its partners, plus updates and features from external organisations and individuals.

Why FOI requests are a powerful but under-used research tool

Freedom of Information (FOI) laws are a crucial tool for the transparency and accountability of public institutions. Many countries have access to information laws, though …

Having an honest conversation about ethics in participatory research

I am one of several organisers of NCRM’s Collaborative and Participatory Methodological Special Interest Group, which has helped to shape a new webinar series called …

The demand for statistical fluency in longitudinal data

Nowadays, biomedical and social science researchers have access to data more than ever before. These data can provide extremely useful insights to describe, investigate and predict …

Comparative judgement for measuring the hard-to-measure

The hard-to-measure Social scientists are often interested in theoretical constructs that elude efficient and reliable measurement, such as ‘beauty’ or ‘reading comprehension’. Developing instruments for hard-to-measure constructs …

What are latent variables and why might they be useful?

Most of the time, social science researchers analysing quantitative data will tend to fit statistical models which explore variation in a single outcome variable. For example, …

Big qual: the breadth-and-depth method of working with large amounts of qualitative data

How can you analyse large amounts of qualitative data in a way that retains the distinctive characteristics of rigorous qualitative research? This is a question increasingly …

Why examining the gritty details of human social organisation is key to understanding the nature of ‘ubiquitous’ technologies

Consider, for a moment, the pervasive spread of computational devices, services and infrastructures that insinuate themselves into almost every part of life for a sizeable proportion …

What is facet methodology?

Facet methodology is a creative approach to researching that aims to create insights into our social world. It is an approach developed by a team of …