department of informatics

Using Comparison for Qualitative Data Analysis in ICT4D - A Case Study from Syria

TitleUsing Comparison for Qualitative Data Analysis in ICT4D - A Case Study from Syria
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsHalabi, A.
Conference NameIPID 8th International Annual Symposium 2013
Date Published12/2013
Conference LocationCape Town, South Africa
KeywordsCommunity Informatics, ICT4D, Qualitative Data Analysis, Qualitative Research, Syria

Conducting qualitative field research to study social groups and their appropriation of technology is among the collection of approaches used by ICT4D research. However, the wealth and diversity of the resulting qualitative data poses a challenge to the researcher who needs to extract underlying patterns and organize findings to inform policies, technology design, and implementation. In this contribution, we will highlight a practice we found useful in analyzing qualitative field data: using comparisons of data instances. This approach is informed by the works of qualitative sociologists Juliet Corbin, Anselm Strauss, and Howard Becker. We illustrate this practice in action by analysing data instances taken from our field data on community’s use of online tools and social media in Syria. We conducted the study to inform the design of future collaborative and communication tools for supporting community growth and development.

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