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Process-tracing Methodology I – Foundations and Guidelines - Rasmus Pedersen

Rasmus Brun Pedersen
brun@ps.au.dk

Aarhus Universitet

Rasmus Brun Pedersen is an Associate Professor at Aarhus University. His research areas include foreign policy, european integration and qualitative methods development. He has taught numerous classes on qualitative methodology at BA, MA and PhD level, and has taught classes on process tracing at the ECPR Summer School, 2011–2017. 

Rasmus has published several research articles, books and book chapters. He co-authored Process-Tracing Methods and Causal Case Study Methods, both published by the University of Michigan Press.

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Short Outline

Short Bio Rasmus Pedersen is an Associate Professor at the University of Aarhus. His research areas include Foreign Policy, European Integration and Qualitative Methods development. He has taught numerous classes on Qualitative methodology on BA, MA and PhD-level. He has also been instructor on classes on Process tracing at the ECPR Summer School from 2011-2014. He has published several research articles, books and book chapters. He has co-authored a book on Process Tracing methodology and another on Causal Case studies both on the University of Michigan Press. Prerequisite knowledge Some background knowledge of qualitative case study methods will be helpful, in particular the debate between scholars who argue that there is only one logic of scientific inquiry (e.g. King, Keohane and Verba, 1994) and qualitative scholars who contend that there are important differences between quantitative and qualitative methods (e.g. George and Bennett, 2005; Brady and Collier, 2010; Mahoney, 2008). If you are unfamiliar with these debates, I would suggest skimming the chapters in the Brady and Collier edited volume (in particular chapters 1, 2, 9). Short course outline This course is an introduction to Process Tracing methodology, giving participants a set of methodological tools to utilize the method in their own research. The relative strength of Process Tracing methods is that they enable us to study causal mechanisms in single case studies. Causal mechanisms are theories that detail how an outcome is produced. The course introduces the ontological and epistemological foundations of the method, followed by a practical introduction to topics such as how we should conceptualize causal mechanisms in a manner that can be studied empirically, gathering and evaluating evidence, and case selection strategies. The course can be taken as a stand-alone course that introduces the method, but the course is best taken together with the second week course (Process-tracing II), which offers practical, hands-on advice and techniques in relation to your own research topic. The course requires active participation. Most benefit is to be expected if participants are able to use parts of their own research in the exercises during the course.

Additional Information

Disclaimer

This course description may be subject to subsequent adaptations (e.g. taking into account new developments in the field, participant demands, group size, etc). Registered participants will be informed at the time of change.

By registering for this course, you confirm that you possess the knowledge required to follow it. The instructor will not teach these prerequisite items. If in doubt, please contact us before registering.