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AbstractThis research note builds on a previously published discussion of the ‘breadth-and-depth’ method for working with extensive amounts of secondary qualitative data, to consider the way that theory can be used and developed as part of this method. We illustrate potential deductive, inductive, and abductive logics of the relationship between theory and data that can be pursued using the method, but note that in reality research analysis rarely proceeds along such clear categorical lines. Rather, qualitative researchers are more likely to pursue a flexible retroductive logic and analytic practice that the breadth-and-depth method also can accommodate.

Original publication




Journal article


Quality & Quantity


Springer Science and Business Media LLC

Publication Date





1275 - 1280