Carrying out High-Quality Qualitative Research: The Importance of Hard Choices - Methods in Social Policy and Intervention Research

This is a hybrid event

Annette Lareau discusses the tensions in how researchers approach the design for qualitative data. Emphasizing the need for depth and richness in the data, as well as a systematic discussion of conceptual issues, Lareau calls for limiting variability in data collection by making very hard choices. By focusing on specific class, race, or gender groups, and limiting the number of these groups, researchers have a greater possibility of creating very high-quality data. Through these difficult choices, researchers have the opportunity to make strong, conceptually-based claims about specific groups, which can then deepen our knowledge of social mechanisms. Lareau illustrates the discussion with examples of the methodological choices she made in her research for “Unequal Childhoods” as well as for her current research project on high-net-worth families.

Annette Lareau is a Professor of Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. In 2024, she is a Leverhulme Professorial Research Fellow in the Department of Sociology at London School of Economics. She is the author of the award-winning books Unequal Childhoods, Home Advantage, and Listening to People. With Blair Sackett, she authored We Thought It Would be Heaven: Refugees in an Unequal America (University of California Press). She is currently doing a study of the blessings and challenges of wealth for families. Annette Lareau is Past President of the American Sociological Association.

Booking is required for people outside of the Department of Social Policy and Intervention (DSPI). The registration form will be available soon. DSPI members do not need to register