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Using the Framework Method to Analyze Mixed-Methods Case Studies

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By: Will Mason, Nughmana Mirza & Calum Webb Published: 2018 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases Part 2
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Abstract

This case study seeks to introduce readers to framework analysis as a means of organizing and synthesizing mixed-methods data. By offering a practical description of framework analysis in action, we hope to offer guidance on the application of the technique, alongside evidencing its utility for researchers managing large and unwieldy data sets. The research discussed in this case involved six mixed-methods case studies of social work decision making. Case studies were located in England and Scotland and focused on the interplay between families' socio-economic circumstances and social workers' decisions to intervene where there were child protection concerns. These case studies were part of a broader four nations U.K. comparison of the relationship between area-level deprivation and child welfare intervention rates (http://www.coventry.ac.uk/cwip). Framework analysis was adapted by the authors to manage the complex mixed-methods data these case studies produced. Through a critical discussion of the strengths and weaknesses encountered using framework analysis, focusing on issues of coding transparency, team working, data integration, organization, and fragmentation, we elucidate the methodological benefits and drawbacks that researchers might bear in mind when considering the use of framework analysis in social research.

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