Qualitative Research Methods

Potential for the Science of Well-being and Self-Growth


24 - 27 February, 2010





Department of Humanities and Social Sciences

Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur

Kanpur – 208016

Uttar Pradesh, India







Application Form

Resource Persons

Reaching IIT Kanpur

IIT Kanpur Weather

Important Deadlines





Available literature shows a rapid growth in the use of qualitative methods across the world in the last two decades. This growth signifies the efforts by social scientists to make scientific inquiries in social sciences a humanizing experience for both researchers and participants. Qualitative methods have also been used to develop culturally and historically rooted and ideologically informed scientific understanding of human experiences and behaviour about well-being and self-growth. However, qualitative research in India has not kept pace with the global developments in these domains.

Recent developments in qualitative methodology indicate an explicit growing concern for healing and self-growth of human beings who participate as collaborators in a research. The participatory inquiry paradigm, for example, has brought up this concern quite explicitly by its response to the ‘axiological question’ (as the fourth dimension besides ontological, epistemological and methodological ones in any inquiry paradigm and that inquires about meanings or values any paradigm attributes to being and human life) as an ethical responsibility towards ‘flourishing’ and self-growth of human beings participating in a research.

With these broad goals of strengthening scientific research in the areas of well-being and self-growth through qualitative methods, a four-day workshop is being organized at IIT Kanpur. Sessions will be structured on the basis of qualitative method used by the participants in their research. Purpose is to arrive at better insight and understanding about various methods. Talks and the training activities will be in an interactive–learning mode.


Professor Sanjay G. Dhande

Director, IIT Kanpur




Professor Leelavati Krishnan

Head, Department of HSS,

IIT Kanpur


Organizing Committee


Dr. Kumar Ravi Priya


Dept. of HSS, IIT Kanpur


Prof. Ajit K. Dalal


Dept. of Psychology,

Univ. of Allahabad



The major objectives of this workshop would be to:


1.      Organize innovative participatory training activities to learn the fundamentals of generation and analysis of narratives in qualitative research,

2.      Provide a forum for critical discussion on participants’ ongoing research,

3.      Organize special talks on various qualitative methods in participatory mode,

4.      Provide training to the participants through the participatory activities to improve their skills and understanding of qualitative research so that they are able to:

A.     Understand the reflexive nature of ‘experience-near’ approach of qualitative research,

B.     Understand ‘unity in diversity’ of qualitative methods as the methods are oriented towards taking the perspective of the research participant,

C.    Hone their skills of interviewing and participant observation to create a humanizing space for the participants,

D.    Facilitate self-exploration of research participants in the humanizing research space that would allow them to express themselves authentically around the research questions,

E.     Explore the models of self and well-being (both Western and non-Western) as ‘sensitizing concepts’ in their research, and

F.     Explore other issues or concerns of the workshop participants about their ongoing qualitative research.


Participants of the workshop will be research scholars, young faculty and practitioners, in Psychology and other social science disciplines, who are using qualitative methods in their research, teaching or practice. About 20 participants will be selected on all-India basis.  The selected participants will be conveyed the decision about their selection by 1 January, 2010. The selected participants should submit on or before 05 February, 2010, a draft manuscript of about 5000 to 8000 words written by them related to their current qualitative research. Participants should be conducting qualitative research in the following areas of well-being and self-growth:

  • Social construction and experiences of illness, health or well-being

  • Construal of personal, social and spiritual selves

  • Experiences of transcendence and self-growth

  • Stress management through meditation and yoga

  • Stress management and well-being in family and workplace

  • Challenges of coping, healing and self-growth amidst violence, disadvantage and injustice

  • Suffering and healing as a cultural and experiential process

  • Self-realization, consciousness and meditation

  • Any other area related to welling and self-growth


How to Apply for Participation

Click Here to download the Abstract Submission Form. Please send the filled-up form as an attached Microsoft Word file ('.doc' and not '.docx' file) on or before 20 December, 2009 to Dr. Kumar Ravi Priya by e-mail on the address:



Resource Persons


Specialists in qualitative methodology and social science of well-being and self-growth would provide training in a participatory mode.



Registration fee for the workshop is Rs. 500. The details about payee and the mail address shall be conveyed to the selected participants along with the letter of selection for participation. The participants will be provided conference kit, accommodation, meals and beverages etc. during their stay at the workshop venue. They will also be provided non-AC Sleeper Class train-journey allowance.




Rail and Road Connectivity: Kanpur is connected by rail and road with the major cities in India. The IIT Kanpur is located at a distance of about 16 kilometers from the Kanpur Central Railway Station, in the vicinity of Kalyanpur, Kanpur. Taxis are available from the Cantt side of the Kanpur Central Railway Station (from Platform number 1 side). The city taxis may be old-fashioned. There is a pre-paid auto and taxi booth. The rates are about Rs. 200/- to 250/- for a taxi, and Rs. 130/- for an auto-rickshaw. Sometimes you may be able to negotiate a few rupees less with the driver, if you don't go to the pre-paid booth.

Air connectivity: Visitors coming over to Kanpur have to get down at Lucknow Airport, Lucknow, the capital city of the state or Uttar Pradesh, India. One can avail the taxis at the airport taxi-stand, but they can ask for any arbitrary amount. The best thing is to ask your host in IIT Kanpur in advance to book a taxi for you. Depending on the type of vehicle, these taxis will charge between Rs 1000/- and Rs. 1300/- (Charge for Air-conditioned taxi is only Rs. 100/- to 200/- extra). For more details about reaching Kanpur from different cities of India by air or train, please click here to find the information on our 'Students' Placement Office' web page.

The participants are requested to first to come over to the Visitors’ Hostel (Guest House) of IIT Kanpur for further directions regarding accommodation. In case of difficulty in reaching there, one may call on phone numbers of Visitors’ Hostel: 0512-2597209 and 0512-2597202.


Weather Conditions


Kanpur in February end is generally pleasant with daily average temperature range, 10-25 degree Celsius. However, in the IIT Kanpur campus, it can get cold by Indian standards especially during the late evening hours. The temperatures might drop to about 5 degree Celsius during late nights. Participants are advised to carry appropriate clothing.



For any other information related to the workshop, please contact:


Kumar Ravi Priya (Convener),

Department of Humanities and Social Science,

Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur,

Kanpur – 208016, Uttar Pradesh.





Ajit K. Dalal (Co-convener),

Department of Psychology,

University of Allahabad,

Allahabad – 211002, Uttar Pradesh.




Important Deadlines


1.      Abstract Submission:

20 December, 2009

2.      Decision about Selection to Selected Participants:

01 January, 2010

3.      Submission of Full Paper by Selected Participants:

05 February, 2010

4.      Registration by Selected Participants:

10 February, 2010