Seeking an Equal Place at the Therapy Research Table: An Introduction to a Series on the Pragmatic Case Study Method
Keywords:case study method, patient-focused research, case study epistemology, therapy “culture wars”, psychoanalysis
AbstractThis is an introduction to a series of three articles that address the potentials and challenges of a systematic and naturalistic approach to the case study method as embodied in the design of this PCSP journal, a model that the late Kenneth Howard called "patient-focused research." These articles help to advance this model by addressing continuing barriers to case studies achieving an equal place at the therapy research table. These barriers can be found in politics and ideology (Edwards); in epistemology (Eells); in the logic of knowledge generation (Edwards and Eells); and in the relative lack of scientific rigor in a psychotherapy area that has traditionally embraced case studies, psychoanalysis (Messer). The three articles are followed by an integrating discussion (Caspar). As a group, these articles provide a persuasive rationale for the value of properly conducted case studies as a complement to group studies in improving the effectiveness of psychotherapy.
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