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ERIC Number: EJ950254
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 56
ISSN: ISSN-1077-8004
Access to Information and Freedom of Information Requests: Neglected Means of Data Production in the Social Sciences
Walby, Kevin; Larsen, Mike
Qualitative Inquiry, v18 n1 p31-42 Jan 2012
Access to information (ATI) and freedom of information (FOI) mechanisms are now relevant features of governments in many liberal democracies today. Citizens, organizations, and permanent residents in several countries across the globe can request unpublished information from federal, provincial, state, county, and municipal government agencies. However, most qualitative researchers appear to be unfamiliar with ATI/FOI or write it off as an approach used by journalists rather than as a way to systematically produce qualitative and longitudinal data about government practices. In this article, the authors discuss the use of ATI/FOI requests as a means of data production. The authors show how the use of ATI/FOI requests intersects with issues such as reflexivity, the Hawthorne effect, interviewing, and discourse analysis. The study objective is to foster a multidisciplinary discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of ATI/FOI requests as a data production tool. (Contains 5 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A