National Centre for Research Methods



Placement Scheme


Qualitative Research Methods in the Social Sciences: Innovation, Integration and Impact (Qualiti) is part of the ESRC National Centre for Research Methods. Based in the Cardiff School of Social Sciences, Qualiti has the following aims;

    To explore the opportunities and challenges for integrating different qualitative research approaches, modes of data collection, data types and analytical strategies;
    To exploit new opportunities for the recording, display and communication of qualitative data;

    To develop innovative and participatory methods of qualitative inquiry;
    To enhance the role, impact and understanding of qualitative inquiry in the public domain.

The mission of the ESRC National Centre for Research Methods as a whole is to provide a strategic focal point for the identification, development and delivery of an integrated national research, training and capacity-building programme aimed at:

promoting a step change in the quality and range of methodological skills and techniques used by the UK social science community; and
providing support for, and dissemination of, methodological innovation and excellence within the UK

Application Details

All placements for 2007 have now been filled.

Placement Scheme

The Qualiti placement scheme offers opportunities for postgraduate, postdoctoral and early career researchers to visit the Cardiff School of Social Sciences, and spend time with the Qualiti team. We are able offer three different kinds of placement;

1. Project specific placements: opportunities to work with research teams on the demonstrator projects being undertaken as part of the Qualiti research programme. In 2005-6 we are able to offer placements on two projects:

(i) Lay and expert participation in qualitative enquiry

This project examines 'lay' and 'expert' engagement and dialogue around an emergent medical technology, namely the use of stem cells in the treatment of Type 1 diabetes, and demonstrates the potential of qualitative social science to contribute to policy and practice. The researchers are using an innovative roundtable workshop model designed to create an integrative forum for stakeholder communication and knowledge exchange. A placement attached to this project would suit researchers interested in medical sociology and qualitative methods, knowledge transfer, public engagement and 'expertise'.

(ii) A qualitative sociological autopsy study of gendered suicide

This project uses a multi-modal qualitative approach to a sociological study of suicide, demonstrating the ways in which public data, documentary data and research generated data can be used to critically engage with and make sense of the social processes and phenomena surrounding suicidal events. Using interviews with people bereaved through suicide, coroner's records and media accounts the researchers are developing a framework to analyse suicide from qualitatively derived data. A placement attached to this project would suit researchers interested in the sociology of suicide, gender studies, sociology of death, multi-modal methods and psycho-social studies.

2. Training placements: incorporating a flexible and negotiated programme of activities, integrating methodological training, 'hands-on' research experience and opportunities to work on your own data with members of the Qualiti team. An example of a training placement would look as follows, however timetables can be tailored to individual needs:

  Day one Day two Day three Day four Day Five
AM Arrival and orientation

Introduction to demonstrator project (1)

Explication and demonstration of method

Introduction to demonstrator project (2)

Explication and demonstration of method

Hands-on workshop using data brought by placement researcher working with an expert in one of the following:

(i) Advanced narrative analysis
(ii) Advanced discourse analysis
(iii) Visual data analysis
(iv) Hypermedia data analysis
(v) Advanced document analysis

Review of week and departure

Introduction to Qualiti

Overview of NCRM resources available to researchers

Examination of project data and method Examination of project data and method  

3. Research capacity building placements: designed to provide a supportive qualitative research environment for early career researchers to work on their own projects, or develop new projects, utilising the physical and intellectual resources of Qualiti. Individual placements can be negotiated to ensure they are commensurate with current experience and anticipated needs. The programme of work is anticipated to be largely self directed, with appropriate support from Qualiti being negotiated prior to the onset of the placement.



ESRC National Centre for Research Methods
ESRC - Economic & Social Research Council