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From an idea to a research question

After reading this chapter, you should see how personal or scientific interests and experiences are the background to developing a research interest in many cases; know more about the process from such an interest to a research question; and see the relevance of taking a perspective and of using theory in qualitative research. In this chapter, we will change the focus from more general considerations about qualitative research. Here, we will address issues of planning and preparing a study as a preliminary to the actual research acts in the field. For this purpose, we will discuss general issues and problems of planning by using concrete examples of my own research. Very generally speaking, these projects focus on professionals’ concepts of health and ageing (Flick et al., 2002, 2003) and on homeless adolescents’ health (Flick and Röhnsch, 2007). In the history of qualitative research, we find several examples of how ideas ...

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