Mapping the world's opinions

The term research philosophy refers to a system of beliefs and assumptions about the development of knowledge. In layman’s terms, a research philosophy is the choice a researcher makes on how to pursue his research, consciously or subconsciously. Scholars have identified five of the most prominent research philosophies in academia, however, choosing one is a matter of debate. (main source: Saunders, Mark & Lewis, P & Thornhill, A. (2009). Understanding research philosophies and approaches. Research Methods for Business Students. 4. 106-135.)

Critical Realism

Supporters of critical realism claim that reality is much more than our senses allow us to see, preferring to focus on the bigger picture.


Focuses on the observable reality and aims to produce law-like generalisations.


A subjectivist philosophy, that emphasizes the role of language and aims to give voice to alternative or deprecated views.


A subjectivist philosophy that focuses on studying the people and the meanings they create.


Rejects the views of the above philosophies and focuses on making scientific progress using a variety of methods.

This page was last edited on Tuesday, 10 Sep 2019 at 21:32 UTC