David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy of the Social Sciences 42 (1):99-120 (2012)
External validity is typically regarded as the downside of case study research by methodologists and social scientists; case studies, however, are often aimed at drawing lessons that are generalizable to new contexts. The gap between the generalizability potential of case studies and the research goals demands closer scrutiny. I suggest that the conclusion that case study research is weak in external validity follows from a set of assumptions that I term the "traditional view," which are disputable at best. In this view, external validity is treated as a matter of mere representativeness. I argue that it is best understood instead as a problem of inference and that the emphasis should be placed on the comparability of the study rather than on the typicality of the case. By making case studies highly comparable, their external validity can be reliably and efficiently assessed and, in this way, their generalizability potential enhanced
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Francesco Guala & Luigi Mittone (2005). Experiments in Economics: External Validity and the Robustness of Phenomena. Journal of Economic Methodology 12 (4):495-515.
Mary S. Morgan (2012). Case Studies: One Observation or Many? Justification or Discovery? Philosophy of Science 79 (5):667-677.
John Elliott & Dominik Luke (2008). Epistemology as Ethics in Research and Policy: The Use of Case Studies. Journal of Philosophy of Education 42 (s1):87-119.
A. Ritterbusch (1981). Komparative Aussagemuster in Bezug Zu Komplementären Und Enkaptischen Modellen der Morphologie. Acta Biotheoretica 30 (1).
Luis M. Miller (2010). Why a Trade-Off? The Relationship Between the External and Internal Validity of Experiments. Theoria 25 (3):301-321.
Nancy Cartwright & Eileen Munro (2010). The Limitations of Randomized Controlled Trials in Predicting Effectiveness. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 16 (2):260-266.
Douglas N. Walton (1983). Ethics of Withdrawal of Life-Support Systems: Case Studies on Decision-Making in Intensive Care. Greenwood Press.
Tom Brislin (1997). Case Studies by Numbers: Journalism Ethics Learning. Journal of Mass Media Ethics 12 (4):221 – 226.
Jeffrey W. Lucas (2003). Theory-Testing, Generalization, and the Problem of External Validity. Sociological Theory 21 (3):236-253.
Stephen Brigley (1995). Business Ethics in Context: Researching with Case Studies. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 14 (3):219 - 226.
Lindley Darden (1991). Theory Change in Science: Strategies From Mendelian Genetics. Oxford University Press.
Joseph C. Pitt (2001). The Dilemma of Case Studies: Toward a Heraclitian Philosophy of Science. Perspectives on Science 9 (4):373-382.
Arthur Schram (2005). Artificiality: The Tension Between Internal and External Validity in Economic Experiments. Journal of Economic Methodology 12 (2):225-237.
Added to index2011-12-06
Total downloads18 ( #91,023 of 1,098,408 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #42,765 of 1,098,408 )
How can I increase my downloads?