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Processes of a case study methodology for postgraduate research in marketing Chad Perry Processes of a case study methodology 7 85 U n ive rsi ty of Sou the r n Q ueensl a nd, Toowoomba , A ust r a l i a Introduction C a s e s t u d i e s a re f a m i l i a r t o m a rke t i n g e d u c a t o r s a n d t h e i r s t u d e n t s a s a teaching device. For example, the Harvard Business School’s cases are widely used to allow students to be emotionally involved and le ar n action-related analysis of real, complex situations (Christensen and Hansen, 1987). However, a l t h o u g h c a s e s t u d i e s c a n a l s o b e u s e d a s a re s e a r c h m e t h o d o l o g y ( E a s t o n , 1994a; Parkhe, 1993; Tsoukas, 1989;…show more content…
That is, it holds that there is an external reality (Tsoukas, 1989), although the complexity of that reality and the limitations of a researcher’s mental capacity makes triangulation of data essential to refine fallible observations of that re ality. The continuing effo r ts of many marketing researchers almost necessitates the belief that there is an exter nal world which can be researched (Hunt, 1991; Leplin, 1986). In other words, case s t u dy re s e a rc h e ff o r t s u s u a l l y i nvo l ve t h e c o l l e c t i o n o f p e rc e p t i o n s o f “ u n o b s e r v ab l e ” e x t e r n a l w o r l d p h e n o m e n a s u c h a s p e r c e p t i o n s t h a t a r e “unobservable” (Hunt, 1991, p. 282), for example, views about non-economic and non-technological motivations in relationship marketing. As has been noted in the marketing liter atu re (Hunt, 1991), p ositivism requires that only observable phenomena can and should be researched, so realism rather than positivism is a more appropriate epistemological guide for case study research. Coming to the third dimension in Table I, case study researchers expect that the i r know l e dge c l ai ms c an and w i l l be eval uate d thro ug h s o me c o mmo n measures, like reliability and validity issues, careful

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