Qualitative Comparative Analysis

When? 22 Jan 2018, 09:00 to 17:00
Where? Classroom 511/512

The purpose of this intensive three day workshop from Jan 22 to 24 is to provide a full introductory-to-intermediate training in Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA). QCA will be examined both as a research approach and as a set of techniques. As a research approach (as part of “Configurational Comparative Methods” or “Set-Theoretic Methods”), QCA is  geared towards systematic cross-case comparison, a form of synthesis between ‘case-oriented’ and ‘variable-oriented’ approaches, the formalization of statements of necessity and sufficiency, an emphasis on complex causality, the quest for some level of parsimony, and the possibility to formulate ‘modest generalizations’. As a set of techniques, we will provide training in all main QCA options: crisp-set QCA (csQCA), mvQCA (multi-value QCA) and fsQCA (fuzzy-set QCA) as well as their different uses, from typology building to theory testing and theory elaboration. We will use several datasets from published applications, and have participants replicate “hands-on” these empirical applications, through all the technical steps and arbitrations, using different software options such as TOSMANA, FS/QCA and the ‘QCA’ R package. Participants are also most welcome to bring some of their own data. We will also examine different forms of ‘mixed methods’ or ‘multi-method’ options, combining QCA with qualitative and/or quantitative (statistical) techniques.

There is a cap of 15 participants for this workshop. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptops to the workshop to use QCA during the days. There will be desktop computers available to participants only during the first day of the workshop.

Costs: $ 275 payable to Antonia Sohns (antonia.sohns@mail.mcgill.ca), who organizes the workshop. Please register as soon as possible as the workshop can only take place (due to costs) if we can fill all spaces. Cancellation only possible if you find a replacement or we can fill the space otherwise. Antonia will get in touch with you with details about the workshop schedule and for payment after registration.

The instructors: Benoît Rihoux, full professor at the UCLouvain (Belgium) is a world-leading scholar in the field of QCA development, innovations, empirical applications and dissemination. He has published extensively in that field, including a much-cited textbook (Configurational Comparative Methods, with Ch. Ragin, eds., 2009), multiple review articles and empirical publications in diverse fields including. He has also collaborated with scholars and practitioners from various fields for QCA empirical applications in policy analysis, evaluation, management, organizational studies, geography, environmental research, health services research etc. He is the initiator and coordinator of the COMPASSS international network around QCA-type methods (compasss.org) and is joint academic convener of the ECPR Methods School.  Priscilla Álamos-Concha, doctoral researcher at Antwerp Management School (AMS) and  currently completing her PhD research at the UCLouvain. She has developed expertise in social research methods (particularly QCA, Process-Tracing, concept formation and research design) and applied these methods on different empirical topics.  In her PhD research, she combines QCA with Process-Tracing techniques in a Multi-Method research design. She has co-authored several review and empirical pieces around QCA, including a recent Spanish-language QCA textbook (Medina Iborra, Castillo Ortiz, Alamos-Concha & Rihoux, 2017), and has extensive teaching experience in the field at the ECPR Methods School.

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