Tip: How much time and effort should I devote to collecting the case study data? How do I know whether I’m finished collecting the data?
Unlike other methods, there is no clear cut-off point. You should try to collect enough data so that (a) you have confirmatory evidence (evidence from two or more different sources) for most of your main topics, and (b) your evidence includes attempts to investigate major rival hypotheses or explanations.
What do you think are some of the cut-off points for other methods, and would they work in doing case study research?
Tip: How do I start analyzing my case study data?
You might start with questions (e.g., the questions in your case study protocol) rather than with the data. Start with a small question first, then identify your evidence that addresses the question. Draw a tentative conclusion based on the weight of the evidence, also asking how you should display the evidence so that readers can check your assessment. Continue to a larger question and repeat the procedure. Keep going until you think you have addressed your main research question(s).
Could you have started with the data instead of the questions?
This material is drawn from the SAGE Publishing text Case Study Research and Applications by Robert K Yin, President of COSMOS Corporation, an applied research and social science firm. This methodology book is the most site book in the social sciences and complete with 11 applications giving readers access to exemplary case studies drawn from a wide variety of academic and applied fields.