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Using a business problem that is of concern in your workplace or in an organisation that you are familiar with, perform the following tasks:
1. Briefly provide some background information to the organisation.
2. Identify a general business problem or opportunity where a research study could assist decision making.
3. As part of the preliminary information gathering process conduct a brief literature review on the problem area. In writing your review, note that with a literature review the researcher critically analyses what has been written and relates it to the specific problem he or she is addressing. In other words, literature reviews are not about passively accepting and communicating the views of other writers. Employ at least five reference articles in your review.
4. Define the specific research question(s) for the general problem.
5. Identify a qualitative research method (in-depth interviews, focus groups, etc) that could be used to address the identified problem. Justify with reasons, your choice of method.
6. Using the qualitative method discussed in the previous task, develop a qualitative research plan detailing how you would conduct the research that addresses the research question(s).
The research plan should address, at least, the following:
- What type of issues/questions should be explored? If using focus group, prepare the moderator’s guide; if using in-depth interviews, prepare the interview guide.
- How many groups, interviews or case studies would you recommend?
- How will you select the sample of research participants?
- Location – i.e. where should the interviews /groups be conducted?
- How would you propose the data be analysed?
- What are the ethical implications of your research, and how will they be addressed?
This assignment is designed to address how the researcher would plan a qualitative research methodology to investigate a business problem. The capacity to know how to identify, collect preliminary information on and develop a research plan for a business problem is critical for business success. This task will help you develop the following learning outcomes: identify a business reserach opportunity; synthesise literature; apply appropriate methods; plan and design a research project; justify the use of qualitative research techniques and discuss ethical issues in business research.