Stake The Art of Case Study Research Writing the Report

Stake, R. (1995). The art of case study research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Chapter 8: Writing the Report

  • "It is an effective author who tells what is needed and leaves the rest to the reader (p. 121)."
  • Organizing the Report Early On

    • Stake recommends using a table of contents with page allocations rather than a topical outline as a guide for writing.
  • Readers

    • There are two types of readers: those who actually read what is written, known as empirical readers, and those for whom the author writes, known as model readers.
    • "The important thing is to write for the understanding that-ought-to-be, not to write down so as to minimize misinterpretation but to write up so as to maximize reader encounter with the complexity of the case (p. 126)."
    • "By providing information easily assimilated with the readers' existing knowledge, the writer helps readers construct the meanings of the case (p. 126)."
  • Storytelling

    • "Case study reporting is not simply storytelling (p. 127)."
    • Cases differ from stories. Stories are known by their problems; cases are not. Cases have issues that need to be illuminated; stories do not. Stories result in a climax; cases do not.
    • Stake also does not recommend using the traditional research report format as a template for writing case study research.
  • Vignettes

    • "A vignette often is an extreme representation, quite atypical (p. 128)."
    • Be cautious about using vignettes. Make sure that they serve a purpose.