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The Influence of the Method of Data Collection on the Validity of Findings from the Field of Social Services

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Title in English The influence of the method of data collection on the validity of findings from the field of social services


Year of publication 2012
Type Article in Proceedings
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Economics and Administration

Field Economy
Keywords Social services; nonprofit organizations; survey; data description; quantitative research
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Description Hendl (2005, p. 161) believes that the selection of the method should be dictated by the research question. Similarly, Ochrana (2009, 14) writes that the selection of the methodology significantly determines the choice of research methods. According to Disman (2009, 287) the research process starts with observation and data collection. Each research design should clearly define the use of quantitative and qualitative data or the combination of both the methods and data sets (Punch 2008, 74). Quantitative research, whose outcomes we discuss in our paper, requires, as its fundamental method, the collection of data that can then be compared and analysed by chosen criteria. We believe that the quality of the collected data determines the further direction of the research, and the validity of its findings. This belief is based on the discovery of differences in findings by two research projects – one carried out by the Centre for Nonprofit Sector Research as an independent research institute and the other implemented by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs as a state authority. If the data presented by two different institutions differ, the question arises whether to work with the data provided by the higher authority. Our paper thus opens a discussion. We, like so many before us, ask ourselves the question where it is that the problems of differing data and interpretations arise.
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