May 23, 2006

Was Einstein a Qual Researcher too ?

Found this quote by Albert Einstein...which was like music to my ears!

I have had this discussion ad nauseum with fellow researchers from the other side of the fence (read quant) and sometimes very senior researchers in the rank...try to emphatically argue how its futile to judge the effectiveness of one discipline by a yardstick designed for another. No matter what, there will always be people ranting about the 'subjectivity' of qual research and questioning its validity and reliability, disregarding the fact that that the beauty of qual research is not in 'proving scientifically' that people behave in a certain way bringing to the fore some of the complexities of this behaviour. What would we achieve by just understanding that 8 out of every 10 people who shop at a super market purchase on impulse without understanding

- what goes through the mind of the person who grabs a bar of chocolate at the till or
- why they picked up 20 $ worth of stuff that was not on their shopping list and did not even realise it untill they reached home.

Many a times I fight tooth and nail when confronted with this issue but on some occassions when i dont see any sensibility at the other end...I just say a silent prayer 'Forgive them lord for they know not what they say'


1 comment:

Ruth Huxley said...

Faith takes over where science stops. when something cannot be explained scientifically, we tend to place faith in a higher force.

Thus qualitative research uncovers what quantitative research may obfuscate on occasion.