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The National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) conducts research and training in social science research methods, aiming to advance methodological understanding and practice across the UK social science research community. This podcast series highlights developments in methodological research in social sciences. NCRM coordinating Hub is based at the University of Southampton.

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Methods is a podcast from the National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM). The centre conducts research and training in social science research methods, aiming to advance methodological understanding and practice across the UK social science research community. Through 15 minute interviews with researchers, Methods highlights the latest developments in social science methods research, showcasing innovative ideas and new research findings and demonstrating their impact.
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2018-12-21 19:59
last episode published
2018-12-20 03:00
publication frequency
38.19 days
Kaisa Puustinen owner  
National Centre for Research Methods author  
Number of Episodes
Detail page
Education Science & Medicine Higher Education Social Sciences



Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors

Teaching Big Qual: benefits and challenges for students and teachers - Ros Edwards and Sarah Lewthwaite

In a special mini-series of our podcast, we discuss the secondary analysis of large-scale qualitative data as a new research method. Here Ros Edwards and Sarah Lewthwaite from the University of Southampton talk about how the method might benefit and ch...
Ros Edwards and Sarah Lewthwaite author

Making space for Big Qual: new ideas in research methods and teaching - Lynn Jamieson and Sarah Lewthwaite

In a special mini-series of our podcast, we discuss the secondary analysis of large-scale qualitative data as a new research method. Here Lynn Jamieson from the University of Edinburgh and Sarah Lewthwaite from the University of Southampton reflect on ...
Lynn Jamieson and Sarah Lewthwaite author

Remember your body: a somatics toolkit for ethnographers - Eline Kieft

A researcher’s physical sensations are widely understood to contribute to their insights into people and culture. Yet there are no adequate courses that teach students how to use their body as a research instrument. It’s a gap that a group of NCRM fund...
Eline Kieft author

A short introduction to the Timescapes Archive - Kahryn Hughes

We introduce the TimeScapes Archive, an archive designed to enable the sharing and re-use of datasets that have been generated using qualitative longitudinal research methods. Our guest is Kahryn Hughes. Kahryn is the Director of the TimeScapes Archive...
Kahryn Hughes author

Transforming lives with storytelling - Joanna Wheeler

Getting participants to tell their stories can be both moving and powerful, but can it transform lives? In this episode of the Methods Podcast, Research Method Festival presenter Joanna Wheeler - from The Western Cape University in South Africa - talk...
Joanna Wheeler author

Food for thought: using fitness bracelet technology to tackle poor nutrition in low-income countries - Giacomo Zanello

Many of us use fitness watches to get fitter, but could the technology behind these devices help the millions of people across the world who don’t have enough food to eat? In this episode of the Methods Podcast, Dr Giacomo Zanello from the University o...
Giacomo Zanello author

Mind the gap: why skills are key to data re-use - Richard Welpton

When it comes to making more data from government departments more readily available to researchers, there has for some time been a will, but not always a way. When the way is found, it can be painstaking and time-consuming for all concerned. Ahead of...
Richard Welpton author

Using satellites to slash survey costs - Marco Haenssgen and Ern Charoenboon

Carrying out surveys on hard to reach populations in far flung parts of the world can be challenging and expensive. But researchers from the Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health at the University of Oxford have used freely available satellite...
Marco Haenssgen and Ern Charoenboon author

Diary of a participant - using Apps for qualitative research - Laura Radcliffe and Leighann Spencer

Researchers have been using diaries to capture the experiences and thoughts of their participants for some time, but the advent and growth of new technology has opened up exciting opportunities to use mobile devices in the same way. In this episode of ...
Laura Radcliffe and Leighann Spencer author

Changing the world with mixed methods - Donna Mertens

From climate change to water security - there are some problems facing the world that often seem unsolvable. So how can researchers stay positive about the role they have in tackling these huge challenges and which research methods should they consider...
Donna Mertens author

Understanding poverty using visual participatory methods: can it work? - Daniel McCulloch

Actively engaging study participants in research to give them a voice is a method that has grown in popularity in recent years. But does this approach really give people a voice and if so how? In his research project <a href="
Daniel McCulloch author

Digging deep! The archaeological metaphor helping researchers get into Big Qual - Susie Weller

Working across qualitative data sets is a relatively new but nevertheless exciting proposition, but can it be done well and with integrity? In this episode of the Methods Podcast, we talk to Dr Susie Weller from the University of Southampton who, with ...
Susie Weller author

Multi-sited ethnography: a researcher’s story - Pauline von Hellermann

Travelling to different locations to undertake ethnographic research undoubtedly provides some interesting and exciting opportunities to extend and deepen a researcher’s analysis. But what are the real benefits and challenges around multi-sited ethnogr...
Pauline von Hellermann author

Having a family: what can our genes tell us about fertility? - Melinda Mills

Researchers have access to a fantastic array of information about people and their lives. Large scale household and biological surveys have collected data not just about people's environment and circumstances, but also physical samples of blood and sal...
Melinda Mills author

Using mobile devices to understand spending - Annette Jackle

The development of mobile technology has brought with it some exciting opportunities for those interested in collecting data from households about their finances. Researchers based at the University of Essex who run the <a href="http://www.understan...
Annette Jackle author

Telling a longitudinal story - Vernon Gayle

Across the social sciences, there is widespread agreement that quantitative longitudinal research designs offer analysts powerful scientific data resources. However, a large number of texts on social survey analysis are written from a statistical, rath...
Vernon Gayle author

Questions of disclosure: a synthetic answer - David Martin

In a rapidly changing linked data environment, there is much excitement about its potential, but still plenty of concern around the need to understand and mitigate any risk of disclosure of personal information. In this episode of our Podcast, Professo...
David Martin author

How are we influenced by the information we are exposed to? - Iulia Cioroianu

The media environment, including the way we consume our news has been radically changed by the advent of the Internet. What does this mean for the type of content we look at and how we share it with our off- and online networks? And how does it influe...
Iulia Cioroianu author

Reproducing social science research: give up your code - Vernon Gayle

While there is now an unprecedented amount of large-scale social science data suitable for sociological research, in reality it is impossible to ‘reproduce’ the results of most of the analyses that are published because information on how the work is u...
Vernon Gayle author

Introduction to time use diaries - Jonathan Gershuny

How we spend our time has long been of interest to researchers around the world. How we can most accurately capture that information is key and of particular interest to survey methodologists. A popular research method since the early 1960s has been th...
Jonathan Gershuny author

Using visual diaries to capture the everyday lives of people in mid to later life - Wendy Martin

The use of visual methods in research on ageing has become increasingly popular. Not a great deal of it, however, has looked at people in mid to later life. A team at Brunel University, London, however, has been doing just that, using photography to do...
Wendy Martin author

'Statistics Anxiety' A Fairy Tale For Our Times? - John MacInnes

It is typically assumed that social science students are anxious, confused or intimidated by numbers. However this is far more 'common wisdom' than anything that any robust empirical research has demonstrated. Professor John MacInnes from the Universi...
John MacInnes author

Visualising social trends in 3D - Jon Minton

Data visualisation has become synonymous with simple infographics in recent years, but for researchers this isn't necessarily a good thing. That's according to Dr Jonathan Minton from Glasgow University who uses data visualisation, including 3D printou...
Jon Minton author

Researching the oldest old and those living and dying with dementia in care homes - Claire Goodman

There are many uncertainties surrounding end of life care for people with dementia living in care homes. From who is responsible for which aspects of a person’s care to what type of care they receive in the home or in hospital, and how everyone who nee...
Claire Goodman author

Inquiry into the 2015 British general election opinion polls - Patrick Sturgis

The night of the General Election 2015 was a surprising one in more ways than one! A series of opinion polls had led us all to believe that we were in for another Coalition Government, but, as we now know that turned out to be far from the case. For po...
Patrick Sturgis author

Is it possible to use creative methods to research migration and citizenship - Umut Erel

Is it possible to use creative methods such as theatre work shops to research important topics such as migration and citizenship? Are these methods a good way to get information from study participants that other methods maybe can’t and can they be use...
Umut Erel author

Shared understanding between improvising musicians - Michael Schober

We often assume that great musical partnerships are just that - relationships built on a mutual understanding, intensive practice together, learning how to be totally in sync to create an incredible performance. But is it essential that musicians have ...
Michael Schober author
19.07.2015 the challenges of linking health service data - Neil Serougi

Linking data for the benefit of individuals and wider society is an important research area, not just for social scientists, but for us all. One of the most well known and most talked about practical examples of this is the somewhat controversial care....
Neil Serougi author

Data linkage: challenges and opportunities - Peter Elias

The growth of digital information provides social scientists with unprecedented opportunities to access the personal data of people all around the world and to transform our understanding. In this podcast, Professor Peter Elias, Strategic Advisor for D...
Peter Elias author

Teaching and learning social research methods - Melanie Nind, Daniel Kilburn and Rebekah Luff

This is a joint podcast by the NCRM and the International Journal for Social Research Methods (IJSRM). There is little research literature about teaching and learning of advanced research methods, which is the motivation for the NCRM research project '...
Melanie Nind, Daniel Kilburn and Rebekah Luff author

Using Skype in qualitative interviews with young people - Susie Weller

The way we communicate in our professional and personal lives has changed dramatically in recent years. We can now Skype our banks, receive texts from our doctor, and our politicians use Twitter to try to win over voters. For social researchers such d...
Susie Weller author

Surveying UK population's political attitudes – British Election Study - Jane Green

How we vote and why we vote the way we do has become a key part of how we look at politics in the UK. One of the best resources around to help us pick our way through those things is the well-established British Election Study. Professor Jane Green fro...
Jane Green author

Predicting and understanding the 2015 General Election - Professor John Curtice

Declining support for the main parties, allied with the rise of UKIP and the aftermath of the Scottish Independence Referendum mean that the 2015 General Election promises to be one of the most difficult to predict for many years. In addition to change...
Professor John Curtice author

To probe or not to probe - Jouni Kuha

To probe or not to probe respondents' initial answers of "Don't know" is a key question when it comes to tackling the problem of nonresponse in surveys. In an NCRM funded Methodological Innovation Project on Item nonresponse and measurement error in cr...
Jouni Kuha author

The Collaborative Online Social Media Observatory (COSMOS): Beginnings, Emerging Findings and Possible Futures - Dr. Matthew Williams and Dr. Pete Burnap

Dr. Matthew Williams and Dr. Pete Burnap from the NCRM funded Crime Sensing with Social Media project talk about the core ideas behind the founding of the ESRC supported Collaborative Online Social Media Observatory (COSMOS), highlight some of the emer...
Dr. Matthew Williams and Dr. Pete Burnap author

Face 2 Face: Tracing the real and the mediated in children's cultural worlds - Liam Berriman

Researching children's lives ethically in order to inform critical debates around child protection, and getting a better understanding of what it's like to research children in a digital age has been the thrust of the NCRM-funded Face to Face project a...
Liam Berriman author

Using Social Media in Research - Jamie Bartlett

An increasing number of academics and researchers are seeking to exploit the rich data available on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. One organisation leading the way is the think-tank Demos, whose Centre for the Analysis of Social M...
Jamie Bartlett author

Telling the untellable: researching emotionally sensitive and challenging topics - Denise Turner

There can be few more emotionally sensitive and challenging research areas than looking at the deaths of children. Following the death of her own young son, social worker Denise Turner decided to investigate parents' experiences of the professional res...
Denise Turner author

Paradata in qualitative research - Rosalind Edwards

A better understanding of paradata, or the by-products of the collection of survey data, could help researchers gain insights into issues around survey quality and costs. That's according to a team of NCRM-funded researchers who have been examining the...
Rosalind Edwards author

The potential of crowdsourcing for research and funding in academia - Dr Andrew Hudson-Smith

When it comes to the commercial world, crowdfunding has become a mainstream means of accessing money for anyone with a great idea. But what about the possibilities when it comes to funding academic research? Dr Andrew Hudson-Smith at UCL have been expl...
Dr Andrew Hudson-Smith author

Communicating chronic pain: Interdisciplinary methods for non-textual data - Dr Jen Tarr

Chronic pain affects nearly 10 million Britons and can result in time off work and poor quality of life for many of them. Diagnosing and treating chronic pain can be particularly difficult relying heavily on the patient’s ability to communicate their s...
Dr Jen Tarr author

Methodological innovation in digital arts and social sciences - Carey Jewitt

It has become widely accepted that it is both worthwhile and necessary for researchers from different disciplines to work together. But how to go about this may not always be obvious and there will inevitably be challenges. In the exciting and innovati...
Carey Jewitt author

Reverse engineering Chinese censorship: social media and research - Gary King

Chinese social media censorship constitutes the largest selective suppression of human communication in history. It is often assumed that the Chinese Government censors any criticism of its members and policies, but research by a team at Harvard Univer...
Gary King author

The 'Thing-ness' problem of mixed methods research - Sharlene Hesse-Biber

Is mixed methods research a turbulent environment and is innovation being stifled by an overly tightly bound concept of what it is? Sharlene Hesse-Biber, professor in the Sociology Department of Boston College thinks so. Professor Hesse-Biber will be ...
Sharlene Hesse-Biber author

What is inclusive research? - Melanie Nind

What is inclusive research? How do we recognize it, understand it, do it, and know when it is done well? It’s a much-talked about topic among the research and policy communities alike and one that’s now been addressed in a book 'What is inclusive resea...
Melanie Nind author

Mobile research tools for social sciences: Integrating genetic, environmental and behavioural data - Alex Kogan

The NCRM funded project 'Integrating emerging smartphone and genetic initiatives to produce cost-effective, innovative methodology' hopes to produce an unprecedented research tool and data source to transform the ability of social scientists to look at...
Alex Kogan author

Web surveys for the general population: How, why and when? - Gerry Nicolaas

Cultural and technological change has made the web a possible and even desirable mode for complex social surveys, but the financial challenges faced by the Research Councils and the UK Government has accelerated this shift, creating an urgent need to e...
Gerry Nicolaas author

Narrative imagination and everyday life - Molly Andrews

From the challenge of envisioning our own futures to the storytelling skills of Barack Obama, a new book from the Professor Molly Andrews (NOVELLA node) explores how the links between stories and imagination affect the way we live. Narrative Imaginatio...
Molly Andrews author

Ethnic diversity, segregation and the social cohesion of neighbourhoods in London - Patrick Sturgis

The effect of ethnic diversity on communities has become an increasingly hot topic. Many academics and policy makers believe that ethnically diverse communities are characterised by distrust and low levels of social cohesion, while numerous studies sho...
Patrick Sturgis author

Simulation of daily patterns of commuting and social activity - David Martin

A unique collaboration between two NCRM nodes - Talisman and the Hub is working on new methods for the simulation of 'social networks' in UK cities in order to show how individual people move around and are brought together within different residential...
David Martin author