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Business Research Methods

Fourth Edition

Alan Bryman and Emma Bell

Publication Date - May 2015

ISBN: 9780199668649

808 pages
10.4 x 7.7 inches

Covering the full range of core qualitative and quantitative methods, this text provides students with all the skills needed to do business research


A complete introduction to business research, Business Research Methods is the ideal guide for students embarking on a research project. Throughout the text, the authors draw on their own extensive experience to give readers tips for success and provide advice to help them avoid common mistakes.

Developed specifically with business and management students in mind, this bestselling textbook explores the nature and purpose of business research and the issues it entails, while also providing students with practical advice on carrying out their research. In addition to a broad range of relevant case studies, the book features a substantial discussion of ethics, a chapter on internet research methods, and a strong emphasis on practical content such as planning a project and writing it up.

Now in its fourth edition, the text featuresnew chapters on the nature of business research and on sampling in qualitative research.


  • Each chapter is filled with examples of 'real world' research, placing the theories and concepts being discussed in context.
  • A wide range of examples from various business functions - including human resource management, marketing, and strategy - demonstrate the relevance of research to business and management students
  • Coverage of all aspects of business research ensures that students are fully prepared for conducting their own research projects
  • A 'telling it like it is' feature draws on interviews with real research students and their supervisors to give invaluable advice on potential pitfalls to avoid and successful strategies to emulate when undertaking a research project
  • 'Key concepts' are drawn out throughout the text and explained with unrivalled clarity, ensuring that students gain a full understanding of business research terminology and processes

About the Author(s)

Alan Bryman is Professor of Organizational and Social Research at the University of Leicester.

Emma Bell is Professor of Management and Organization Studies and Director of the Centre for Economics and Management at Keele University.

Table of Contents

    Part One
    1. The Nature and Process of Business Research
    2. Business Research Strategies
    3. Research Designs
    4. Planning a ResearchProject and Formulating Research questions
    5. Getting Started: Reviewing the Literature
    6. Ethics and Politics in Business Research
    Part Two
    7. The Nature of Quantitative Research
    8. Sampling
    9. Structured Interviewing
    10. Self-completion Questionnaires
    11. Asking Questions
    12. Structured Observation
    13. Content Analysis
    14. Secondary Analysis and Official Statistics
    15. Quantitative Data Analysis
    16. Using SPSS for Windows
    Part Three
    17. The Nature of Qualitative Research
    18. Sampling in Qualitative Research
    19. Ethnography and Participant Observation
    20. Interviewing in Qualitative Research
    21. FocusGroups
    22. Language in Qualitative Research
    23. Documents as Sources of Data
    24. Qualitative Data Analysis
    25. Computer-assisted Qualitative Data Analysis: Using NVivo
    Part Four
    26. Breaking Down the Quantitative/Qualitative Divide
    27. Mixed Methods Research: Combining Quantitative and qualitative research
    28. E-Research: Internet Research Methods
    29. Writing up Business Research