Research Methodology is a procedural framework

3431 words (14 pages) Essay in Psychology

5/12/16 Psychology Reference this

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Research has been defined as ‘systematic and sustained enquiry planned and self critical which is subject to public criticism. The research is also subject to empirical tests where appropriate and where these are not appropriate, critical discourse will appeal to the judgment of evidence, documents, observation and records (Stenhouse L. 1971). According to Marshall (1995), the research needs to be very well ‘planned’, ‘self critical’ and can use a range of evidence. Research is very important for both the business and academic activities. According to Amartunga et al (2002), there is no literature for the research how it should be defined because research means different things to different people. According to Kotler & Armstrong (2004), research is a process of enquiry and investigations and it is very systematic and methodological.

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Methodology refers to the overall approach to the research process from the theoretical underpinning to the collection and analysis of data. According to Ardalan (2003), the methodologies cannot be true or false like theories; it can be only more or less useful.

According to Buckley et al (1975), suggest that an operational definition of research requires the satisfaction of the conditions that:

It can be orderly investigation of a defined problems;

Adequate and representative evidence to be gathered;

Appropriate scientific methods be used;

Logical reasoning uncolored by bias, be employed in drawing conclusions on the basis of evidence;

The cumulative results of research in a given area yield general principles or laws that may applied with confidence under similar conditions in future.

The researcher be able to demonstrate or prove the validity or reasonableness of their conclusions;

3.2 RESEARCH PARADIGMS:

Research is the process by which new knowledge is created. A research paradigm is a cluster of theories and methods which the researcher apply to develop his research (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2000). Design research paradigm provides obvious information relating to the key concepts and method/techniques which ideally should have to follow in finishing the research. Collis & Hussey (2003) point out that, there are mainly two research paradigms positivist (quantitative) and phenomenological (qualitative).

 

Research is the process by which new knowledge is created. A research paradigm is a cluster of theories and methods which the researcher apply to develop his research (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2000). Design research paradigm provides obvious information relating to the key concepts and methods/techniques which ideally should have to follow in finishing the research (Collins & Hussey, 2003). There are two main research paradigms or philosophies, they are positivistic and phenomenological or interpretivist. According to Gummesson (2000), the term interpretivist will be preferred by the most authors rather than phenomenological as it suggests a broader philosophical perspective and prevents the confusion with a methodology known as phenomenology. Organising the personal paradigm (either positivist, phenomenological or interpretivist ) of research helps to identify the different qualitative and quantitative methods the researcher should have to follow in his entire research work. Nonetheless, this section provides answer to the issues like how you collect data and the way in which you organise the thesis. According to Mangam (2004), the concept of paradigm was brought to the fore by the Thomas Kuhn, in the early 1960s, and also it can be used to represent “people’s value judgements, standards, norms, frames of reference, myths, ideologies, perspectives, theories and approved procedures that govern their thinking and action”.

 

3.2.1 POSITIVISTIC PARADIGM:

This approach seeks the facts or the causes of social phenomena, with very little regard to subjectivist state of the individual. Thus the logical reasoning is applied to the research so that the precision, objectivity and rigour replace hunches, experience an intuition as the means of investigating research problems. According to Goulding (1999), the positivists believe that the science and the process of research is value free. The positivist being consider that the science and the process of research is value free so therefore they consider that they are detached from what they are researching and regard the phenomena which are the focus of their research objects. According to Collins and Hussey (2003), the positivists believe that the objects they are studying are unaffected by their research activities and will still be present after the study has been completed.

 

3.2.2 Interpretive Paradigm:

According to Ardalan (2003), the interpretive paradigm is totally different from the other paradigm because it sees the social world as a process which is created by the individuals. In the interpretive paradigm the social reality exists outside the consciousness of any individuals and the interpretive paradigm is considered as the network of assumptions and these assumptions leads to the belief that there are shared multiple realities which are sustained and changed. The goal of the interpretive researchers is to find the orders that prevail within the phenomenon under consideration; however, they are not objective. Interpretive finance research enables scientists to examine aggregate market behaviour together with the cultural, ethical, political and social issues. According to Ardalan (2003), the interpretive paradigm believes that there are no valid rules universally for finance and financial management.

 

 

3.2.4 Strengths of Positivist paradigm (Quantitative):

the positivistic paradigm is fast and economical where statistics are aggregated from large samples.

the positivistic paradigm can provide wide coverage of the range of the situations.

3.2.5 Strengths of Phenomenological or interpretive paradigm (Qualitative):

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm it mainly contributes to the theory generation.

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm it has the ability to understand the people’s meaning.

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm it has the ability to look at the change processes over time.

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm it has the ability to adjust to new issues and ideas as they merge.

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm the data gathering or data collection methods are natural and they are not artificial.

3.2.6 Weakness of Positivist paradigm (Quantitative):

the positivistic paradigm are not very helpful in generating theories.

the positivistic paradigm mainly focus on for the policy makers to conclude what actions and changes should place in future.

the positivistic paradigm are not the effective tool in understanding the processes.

In the positivistic paradigm the methods used tend to be inflexible and artificial.

3.2.7 Weakness of Phenomenological or interpretive paradigm (Qualitative):

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm the data collection or data gathering can be too long and require more resources.

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm the policy makers give low credibility to results from qualitative approach.

In the phenomenological or interpretive paradigm the analysis and the interpretation of data are more difficult and also it is very harder to control the pace, progress and end points of the research process.

3.3 TRIANGULATION:

“The combination of methodologies in the study of same fact”

Collis and Hussey, 2003, p78

The use of different research approaches, methods and techniques is known as the triangulation and such triangulation can overcome the potential bias and streility of single method approaches (Ardalan, 2003). The triangulation is the name it gets from the land surveying method of fixing the position of an object by measuring it from two different positions. According to Hussey and Hussey (1997), the triangulation has four different types that is 1. Data triangulation: where the data are collected from different sources and the different times. 2. Methodological triangulation: where both the techniques quantitative and qualitative are employed. 3. Investigator triangulation: where the different investigators collect the data independently. 4. Triangulation of theoris: where the theory will be taken from one disciple and it is used to explain the phenomena in another discipline.

In the present research the author is using the personal paradigm which is a triangulation approach or in other words the author is using the both the paradigm (quantitative and qualitative) for this study because a combined or mixed approach helps to solve the issues with different perspective rather than a single outlook.

3.4 Primary Data:

Primary data for our research is collected through questionnaires. When collecting the primary data one can choose to do interviews, observations, experiments and questionnaires. Due to the purpose of our research, only the questionnaire method would be able to approach the topic and be able to collect the answer in a satisfactory manner.

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In our research the primary data is mainly concerned with analyzing the respondent. Further on, the primary data will be used to analyze the factors and how these are related to respondent. The primary data is conducted in a manner to be able to approach our research and solve research questions.

 

3.4.1 Secondary Data:

The secondary data include both qualitative and quantitative data and it can be used for both in descriptive and explorative research. In the present study the positivistic and phenomenological paradigms was used for the investigation. In the present study the answers for the many questions were got from the financial statements but can’t get the feel of intended soft issues/notions from the balance sheet that’s why the questions was sent to the Tata Motors, business analysts, academicians to gauge the feeling. Primary qualitative data corroborated with secondary data from various sources like financial reports of the company, reports from news paper, market reports has helped in investigating the research objectives.

 

  

 

3.4.2 WHY WE NEED PRIMARY AND SECONDARY DATA IN RESEARCH:

 

According to Cook Kotler & Armstrong (2004), for the research both the primary data and the secondary is very important to find the result. The primary data is called the original data where it is been collected direct from the people and the resources. The secondary data is the re-analysis of data for the purpose of answering the original research questions with better statistical techniques or for the purpose of answering the new questions with the old data. According to Glass (1976), primary data will contain the details of the data collections methods and also the informations of how the data has been collected so it is helpful for the research to ascertain the shortcoming of the methods used but the secondary source of information will not the contain the informations about the data collection methods so it is very difficult for the researcher to determine its accuracy.

 

 

3.5 TYPES OF DATA:

It is important for the positivistic paradigm that the data you use is highly specific and precise. In the positivistic paradigm the data you collect will be mainly quantitative data because in this paradigm the measurement is an important element of the research process. In the phenomenological paradigm, the special importance is for the quality and depth of the data so in this phenomenological paradigm the qualitative data is mainly used. In the phenomenological paradigm the data is often referred to as being rich, since it captures the richness of detail (coolican, 1992).

 

3.5.1 Validity:

Validity is useful for the researcher to find accurately what is happening in the situation. According to Coolican (1992), ‘An effect is valid if it measures or demonstrates what the researcher thinks or claims it does’. In the positivistic paradigm, it only focuses on the measurement and the ability to repeat the experiment reliably but there is always a danger that will be very low but on the phenomenological paradigm it mainly targets at capturing the essence of the phenomena and extracting data which is rich in its explanations and analysis. In this paradigm the validity is high because the researchers always aims to gain full access to the knowledge and meaning of those involved in the phenomena. According to Coolican (1992), the one which measures what it is intended to measure is called the valid measure. There is no fact showing that the measure is valid or invalid but the use to which the measure is put for.

 

3.6 DATA COLLECTION METHOD:

 

3.6.1 Interviews:

Interviews are the method of collecting data in which selected number of people are asked questions to find out what they do, think and feel. Interviews may happen face to face, voice to voice and a group of individuals and it is very easy to compare answers. It is associated with both the methodologies positivistic and phenomenological. The problem with the semi-structured interviews are it is more time consuming and also there may be problem in recording the questions and answers, controlling the range of topics and later analyzing the data. In the semi-structured interviews the most of the researchers thinks that it is very important to tape-record the interviews. In general there are many problems associated with conducting the interviews. The whole process of the interviews is time consuming and it is very expensive and in some cases a short of questionnaire may be more appropriate. There is a issue of confidentiality in the Interviews in compare to the other data collecting methods. A large amount of interviewees are needed in the positivistic study and this will rise to the problem of obtaining access to the appropriate sample.

 

The advantage of the interview is that it will allow the researcher to ask more complex questions and ask follow-up questions but it is not possible in the questionnaires. According to Collins & Hussey (2003), an interview may permit a higher degree of confidence in the replies then the questionnaire responds and can take account of non-verbal communications such as attitude and behavior of the interviewee.

 

According to Barnes (2001), in the open-ended type of interviews it allows the interviewer to probe deeply, to solicit expansive responses, and thereby uncover the previously hidden details and open up new lines of enquiry but the disadvantages of the open-ended type of interviews is that it provides large quantities of data to analyze and it is very difficult to concern which data is more relevant for the research. According to Miles (1979), qualitative data is an attractive nuisance. The individual memories can be jogged and past events will be corroborated in the group interviews. However this benefit must be offset against the risk of group-think (Pettigrew, 1973) or politically motivated behaviour (Janis, 1972).

 

 

3.6.2 Surveys:

It is a positivistic methodology whereby only a sample of subjects is drawn from the population and studied to make inferences about the population. When the total population is small, it is very normal to collect the data about the each member in the organization but if the total population is largehis is pretty obvious stuff  really.. do you need to give the reader a lecture on the reason for sampling as opposed to census?

large then it is not possible to collect the data about the each member because it is time consuming and very expensive to collect the data about each member in the whole population so in that case only the sample of that whole population is used. Once the researchers decided on a sample it is very important for the researcher to decide how to ask the survey questions. According to Collins & Hussey (2003), the alternatives are face-to-face or telephone interviews or questionnaires. In the present study the telephone interviews and face to face interviews were not be able to conduct because of the sensitivity of the topic and moreover it was next to impossible to got hold of people.

 

3.6.3 Questionnaires:

Questionnaire is the popular method for collecting data. The main aim of the questionnaire is to find out a selected group of participants do, think or feel. Questionnaires survey is cheaper and less time consuming than any other primary data collecting method. Questionnaires are associated with both the methodologies positivistic and phenomenological. A questionnaire is a list of well structured questions, chosen after considerable testing, with a view to eliciting reliable response from a chosen sample (Collis & Hussey, 2003 pp 173-177). According to Bailey and Avery (1998), questionnaires is the best suit for asking specific questions rather than general questions and also for closed questions rather than open questions.

 

The questionnaires produces the quantitative data, it should be stressed that this may need to be interpreted in subsequent analysis by the researcher, emphasizing the essentially qualitative nature of the research. When compare to the interview method the questionnaire method is the efficient method in collecting data but at the same time the effectiveness of the method is totally depends on the quality of the questionnaires response. In the questionnaire method the data collection and the analysis are simpler and speedier when compare to the interview method because it is time consuming. The questionnaire prevents respondents from seeking clarification from the researcher and also the researcher from the respondent to non-verbal communication. According to Barnes (2001), the major disadvantages of this questionnaire method is the lack of depth and the details of the data.

 

The Bailey and Avery (1998) have developed a questionnaire and the scoring method which is Likert type scale mainly aimed at measuring these five dimensions. The questions probe respondents about aspects of strategic behaviour exhibited within their organizations. According to Barnes (2001), by adopting the questions to the strategy at the operational rather than the corporate level this Likert type method is developed to measure the manufacturing strategy process on these dimensions.

 

 

 

3.7 PRESENT RESEARCH METHOD INVESTIGATION:

 

This study mainly aims for valid and reliable results by using the research method based on surveys, using the following complementary data sources:

The questionnaire was send to the automobile industry experts, academicians, business management students, and business analysts to gather view from wider cross section of the people.

The data was collected mainly by sending questionnaires to the Tata Motor officials in India and in UK to know their view point on the merger and acquisition of Tata and Jaguar.

Official communication to the financial press (press release), especially Financial Times(UK and India).

Available research on the merger and acquisition through literature review.

Specific literature on organization’s underlying philosophy and working practices were analysed.

A positivistic and phenomenological approach was utilised by the researcher in the present study.

 

3.8 Theories and Hypotheses:

The normal process under a positivistic paradigm is to study the literature to establish an appropriate theory and construct a hypothesis. According to Collis and Hussey (2003), with the phenomenological approach you need to carry out the investigation in order to construct a new theory to explain the phenomena because there is no relevant existing theory in the phenomenological approach. In the present research the author has collected the qualitative data substantiated with secondary quantitative data. Qualitative data collected was change into quantitative data.

3.9 Methods:

“A research method is simply a techniques for collecting data”

Bryman & Bell, 2003, p 32

Methods are techniques associated with the personal paradigm of research. It points out the different ways in collecting data. The author introduces the following quantitative and qualitative techniques for colleting and analyzing data for providing proper implications to the research.

 

3.9.1 Qualitative Data:

In the qualitative data analysis there is no clear and accepted set of conventions for analysis like the quantitative data but the qualitative data can be changed to the quantitative data on the basis of some rating scale like Likert Scale which is used in the present research. In the present research the answer choices questions were changed into rating from zero to four. And the non-parametric tests like one sample T-test and descriptive frequency analysis applied on the data. SPSS statistical software was used to analyze the data.

 

3.9.2 Quantitative Data:

Quantitative data analysis mainly deals with the statistical data analysis techniques, specifically in the analysis of behavioural elements of performance (Amaratunga, 2002). In the quantitative analysis the most common used techniques are like for analyzing the data: chi-square analysis, factor analysis, correlation analysis, etc. According to Pacitti (1998), a quantitative data analysis plan generally consists of: data entry and data transfer; raw data assessment; data interpretation; data communicating findings; and completing data analysis.

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