Research Methods for the Study of Religion

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Picture by Michael Holden

Comparative research

A comparative approach to research can be invaluable for understanding broader social processes or contextualising knowledge gained from in-depth case studies.

Designing effective comparative research requires clarity about the common questions, concepts and methods that are used for all the different cases. Careful planning of the elements and stages of the research process can also become particularly important if they are being conducted to a shared timetable.

Discussion paper

Grace Davie explores key methodological and practical issues for designing comparative research, including issues raised by working in cross-disciplinary or cross-national research teams.

Sample studies

(eds.) Anders Backstrom & Grace Davie (2010) Welfare and Religion in 21st Century Europe: Volume 1. Farnham: Ashgate.

This edited volume presents a series of findings chapters from the WREP comparative study of religion and welfare in Europe, but also includes sections on the way in which the comparative research design was developed.