Data Collection Approaches

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The research philosophy that is adopted should reflect the authors’ view point on development of knowledge. An author will thus have to decide on the means of collecting data, use of interviews and the main conceptual issues supporting the research. Modern research has three models; these are positivism, realism and interpretivism. (Cantrell, D. C. (n. d. )). Positivism Positivism entails a scientific stance for research and interpretation of data. Thus only those phenomenon which are observable and measurable are regarded as knowledge.

Positivists maintain an independent and objective stance. (Cantrell, D. C. (n. d. )). They are interested in correlation of objects being studied and imply that these objects were present before they began their examination. There are more quantitative rather than qualitative facets in their research. This is opposite of the positivistic approach and is known as interpretivism or phenomenology. This is used by social scientists with an attempt to comprehend people’s socially constructed interpretations which are subjective to reality.

(Cantrell, D. C. (n. d. )). Though positivistic and interpretivism paradigm are two extremes, most researchers use elements of both practices, which is implied in realism. This approach is considered the most appropriate for the project as the writer will be examining the introduction of CRM in the Chinese telecommunications industry which is as much a technical as a social and cultural. This will enable illustrating the broader picture. In addition, the researcher will make use of quantitative data which will be collected through questionnaire.

Quantitative data in a business case study is necessary as it will substantiate the general trend observed with basic information over a period. (Morgan, 2000). Correlation of factors is also possible through a quantitative approach as it is easier to compare data which provides results which have greater visibility. Research Approach Having chosen a research strategy, the design must be evaluated for which there are two strands, which can be adopted, deductive and inductive.

The deductive approach is used when a hypothesis is developed and the research design has to test that hypothesis. This is in relation to quantitative research and is developed in a way that facts and samples have to be obtained in sufficient numerical quantity for enabling generalization. On the other hand the inductive approach is related to qualitative data, as a sample used in a case study as contrasting to the large quantum of data which is used in the deductive approach. A theory is said to be developed from data collection in this approach.

It demands empirical evidence through observation on experiment for verification opposed to the deductive approach which demands logic and authority as means of proof. The dynamic nature of the research will entail application of both approaches by the author as in practice almost all the research projects have elements of both the approaches in view of the importance of including both qualitative and quantitative findings. Research Data In general data contains information collected and recorded in note books, questionnaires, audiotapes, videotapes, models, photographs, films and test responses.

(Veal, 2000). Research data in this case will be obtained through a survey of the empirical details available about the growth of the Chinese telecommunications sector and the adaptation of CRM in China in general and in the telecommunications sector in particular from the literature. This has been covered in detail in Chapter 2 above and the details will be analyzed in subsequent chapters. Kinds of Research Data The basic classification of research data is in terms of quantitative and qualitative methods.

Quantitative research entails examination of numerical data by using mathematical models and statistical procedures. (Morgan, 2000). Qualitative research involves use of analysis and opinions to explain interviews and documents and understanding the phenomenon. It facilitates improvement of comprehension of the phenomenon. The many methodologies and technologies assist the researchers in obtaining a better insight of various management issues. The study requires a qualitative and some quantitative approach rather than a purely numerical one. Data collection approaches can be primary and secondary.

Primary Sources. Primary sources comprise of data which is unpublished and which has been gathered from the organization directly. While this can be carried out through a number of approaches, the case study approach is the only relevant one which has been adopted for the present study. Secondary Sources. Secondary research contains two issues, statistical information collected by countries, organizations and institutions as well as descriptive documents. The author will use both approaches that will serve as the backbone of the dissertation.

While studying the data, the following will be ensured:- Factually accurate. Material reliable. Systematic Purpose of collection. Representative material. Extensive research will be carried out in the Library as well as on the World Wide Web. The former will provide basic material and the latter more contemporary data which will have to be scrutinised for assurance. There are wide-ranging resources of great help to the research that can provide theoretical background from which the study will set off using analytical and comparison tools for greater contribution.

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