Chapter 9: The multicase study approach in family businesses: opportunities and challenges
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An increasing number of family business researchers apply multicase study approaches to explore their research questions. However, these researchers find many challenges throughout the process. Unfortunately, these challenges often surface too late in the process (e.g., when presenting at a conference or upon journal submission), which limits successful publishing outcomes. In this chapter, we discuss opportunities, challenges, and limitations that family business researchers face throughout the research process and potential ways to overcome them. Specifically, we offer clarity on the following topics: (a) appropriate research questions; (b) selection and access to cases; (c) case depth; (d) analysis of cases; and (e) presentations of findings. We point to specific family business-related challenges, such as the difficulty in accessing owners, as well as the complexity and interdependence of topics that often arise during the interview process.

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