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Difference Between Quantitative And Qualitative Research

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The Analysis of Innovation Systems through Quantitatve and Qualitative Research

As with many aspects of social sciences, assessing innovation is easier said than done. It is necessary to properly understand the dynamics of innovation There are various ways of studying innovation. In particular, innovation systems help put innovation into a broader context.
The first step to better understanding innovation is to understand what exactly an innovation system is. However, even when defining something as simple as an defining an innovation system, there isn’t a full consensus. H Lundvall (1992) and Edquist (1997) put forward the idea that innovation should be studied as a dynamic and holistic process involving institutions, organizations and
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It cannot be said that one method is superior to the other per se, as both have distinct contexts in which they would be more useful. The contrast between qualitative and quantitative research can be thought of as the battle between empirics and constructs, with both leading to truths but in different ways. Indeed, there are methodological differences between qualitative and quantitative research. For one, quantitative research relies on hard data with numbers and figures whereas qualitative research depends less on cold hard numbers and more so on commentary and reasoning. As such, the methods used to gather data vastly differ as well. Quantitative research depends on instruments such as databases and censuses while qualitative data may warrant interviews, surveys and observations. This leads to yet another methodological dissimilarity, namely that of objectivity. Although the implications of data may be open to differing interpretations, quantitative data itself is a matter of fact. Qualitative data on the other hand, provides data that the researcher must draw results from using inductive reasoning. Lastly and perhaps most importantly, the two research methods differ in terms of what they are designed to do. Qualitative research aims to explain how and why certain things happen. Because quantitative research has no way of showing clear cut causality, it can be said that quantitative research is intended to be conclusive. Putting it in a simpler analogy, quantitative research would do measurements hundreds of rooms to figure out that a room’s brightness level correlates highly with the position of its light switch, whereas a qualitative research makes the observation that flicking the switch makes the room

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