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Reference library

To cut a long story short, I had a bit of my project’s research support funding earmarked for a conference in September. That trip never ended up happening, leaving me with a little bit of extra money to spend on my project before the end of the year.

I thought about paying for someone to transcribe my interviews, but that’s something I really should be doing myself – tedious as it is, I find that the process of transcribing really helps me to remember all the detail from the interview. Instead, I’d like to use it on something that will be useful during and after the project: a collection of reference books on research, writing, and social media. It should also be a useful resource to have in a shared office space…

But where do I start? By appealing to the wisdom of crowds, of course. What books would you recommend, and why? I’ll update this list as I get suggestions, and then see what I can afford to buy.

General research methods

  • Bryman, A & Bell, E (2007) Business research methods. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
  • Denzin, N & Lincoln, Y (2005) The SAGE handbook of qualitative research. Sage Publishing, CA.
  • Silverman, D (2001) Interpreting qualitative data: methods for analysing talk, text and interaction. Sage Publishing, CA.
  • Flyvbjerg, B & Sampson, S (2001) Making social science matter. Cambridge University Press.

Case study research

  • Yin, R (2009) Case Study Research: Design and Methods, 4th Ed. Sage Publishing, CA.
  • Stake, R (2006) Multiple Case Study Analysis. The Guilford Press, NY.

Qualitative Analysis Software

  • Bazely, P (2007) Qualitative Data Analysis with NVivo, Sage Publishing, CA.
  • Richards, L (2009) Handling Qualitative Data. Sage Publishing.

Social Media

  • Qualman, E (2010) Socialnomics: how social media transforms the way we live and do business. Wiley.
  • Li, C & Bernoff, J (2009) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technology. Harvard Business School Press.
  • Coulson, J (2010) The Strength of Weak Ties in Online Social Networks: How do users of online social networks create and utilize weak ties to amass social capital? Lambert Academic Publishing.


  • Evans, D & Gruba, P (2007) How to write a better thesis, Melbourne University Press, Melbourne.
  • Kamler, B & Thomson , P (2006) Helping Doctoral students to write: pedagogies for supervision. Routledge, NY.
  • Prose, F (2006) Reading like a writer: a guide for people who love books and for those who want to write them. Reviewed by thesiswhisperer here.
  • Silvia, P (2007) How to write a lot: a practical guide to productive academic writing, APA, Washington DC.

Other interesting stuff

  • Latour, B (1996) Aramis, or the love of technology. Harvard University Press.

What would you recommend, and why?

  1. October 14, 2010 at 3:06 am

    There are no-cost and low-cost software tools for transcribing. If you have questions, you can write me. I’ve done this for years — transcribing. Alan, of VerbatimIT dot com.

  2. October 18, 2010 at 10:03 am

    I sent you some on Twitter – I am thinking of uploading a delicious library of PhD help books. Nag me if I don’t do this soon!

    • October 18, 2010 at 10:19 am

      Thankyou! I’ve just added them… looking forward to seeing what else is on your list 🙂

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