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Researching Organizations

Researching Organizations
The Practice of Organizational Fieldwork

March 2014 | 240 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

Although there are plenty of books that discuss the principles, the philosophy and the techniques of research in organisations, it is much harder to find information on what doing research in organisations actually involves in practice.  Yet this is often one of the most challenging, but also most interesting, aspects of a study.  Drawing on examples and debates from a broad range of disciplines (such as criminology, education and social anthropology as well management) Researching Organisations explores the issues that researchers may encounter when carrying out fieldwork in organisations.  From getting in to an organisation at the start of the research to getting out and maybe back again at the end, the book offers systematic guidance to help researchers navigate the messy reality of fieldwork.  

Researching Organisations is designed for graduate level researchers who may be undertaking fieldwork for the first time, but also for those who wish to gain an understanding of research practice.

Research and Organizations
The Research Process
Ethics in Organizational Research
Getting In: Seeking and Negotiating Access
Getting On: In the Organisation
Getting Out: Leaving the Field and Reporting Research in Organizations
Getting Back
Emerging Issues in Research in Organizations

Matthew Jones makes a great contribution to the study of organizations with his new book. Researching Organizations wrestles with very important yet all too often neglected issues in the practice of fieldwork methodology. The book is based on meticulous scholarship yet entertaining to read; I wish I’d had this book when I started my PhD studies!

Aleksi Aaltonen
The London School of Economics and Political Science

It is  worth noting the interdisciplinary nature of the book, which is reflected through the various examples and theories that Jones draws upon throughout the text, encompassing fields such as criminology and social anthropology...In sum, the text is well written, informative and accessible. It will likely be of use to researchers, both new to and with experience of this field, looking to develop a practice-based approach to organisational research.


Emma Smith

The book contains a wealth of information which is targeted at graduate level researchers, and others who may wish to obtain a greater understanding of organizational research in practice...The practical nature of the book’s layout makes it a useful vade mecum for any researcher in the organisational field and the interdisciplinary nature of the text, drawing on, for example, such fields as criminology and social anthropology, provides a rich source of ideas. In short I can thoroughly recommend Jones’s ‘Researching Organizations’ to anyone contemplating or already engaged upon organizational research.

Clive Simms

This book does indeed shine a light and provides a compass for those ‘wandering in the dark’ of the practice of organizational fieldwork. As a practitioner, I found it a useful blend of underpinning theories, with a good array of practical tips and thought-provokers. It’s systematic, thorough and whilst primarily targeted at graduate-level researchers, it offers a lot to busy experienced practitioners in other disciplines for whom research is not their day job. It will make a relevant contribution to the action learning community as a compendium of practical tools and resources, with lots of useful ideas to stimulate thinking before wading into the practice of organizational fieldwork!

Mandy Chivers
Action Learning: Research and Practice

Great for those students who are undertaking primary research in organisational contexts, recommended to them and to library

Ms Victoria Pagan
Business School, Newcastle University
June 22, 2015

This book is primarily aimed at students who are external to the organisation being studied and so deals at length with issues like entry and exit. By contrast, the majority of my students are researching organisations in which they themselves work. The sections on the design and conduct of research are still of interest and I would recommend the whole book to the few students who are not able to (or choose not to) research their own organisation.

Mr Duncan Grant
Off Campus Division, University of Bolton
March 24, 2015

I feel my students will love the way this book looks at research.

Mr Mike Kershaw
Management , Knowsley Community College
February 26, 2015

My course concerns organizational communication, so this book offers important background information but falls somewhat outside the scope of my teaching.

Professor Merja Koskela
Department of Communication Studies, University of Vaasa
February 18, 2015

Alternative approach to researching organizations.

Dr Douglas Gilbert
School of Organizational Leadership, University of the Rockies
February 6, 2015

Shows the challenge and complexity of researching organisations and gives guidance on how to respond. A very useful resource to any researcher.

Mr Zedias Mutema
Business Administration , South Essex College
October 14, 2014

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter Two: Research and Organisations

Sage College Publishing

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