RDI Comparative Research – 2017

Primary Researcher: Michael Adiyia
Secondary: William (Bill) Ashton

According to Pickvance (2005), comparative analysis is conducted mainly to explain and gain a better understanding of the causal processes involved in the creation of an event, feature or relationship usually by bringing together variations in the explanatory variable or variables. Comparative research can be traced to a long history that has gained much attention in current research due to globalization, technological advances, etc. on cross-national platforms (Azarian, 2011). Conventionally, comparative analysis emphasized on the “explanation of differences, and the explanation of similarities” (p.2). This helps to establish relationships between two or more phenomena and provide valid reasons. Comparisons are now carried out on various levels being regional, national or wider geographical boundaries based on specific subject or area of interest.

This report seeks to provide an overview of the methods of comparative research, institutions doing comparative research, comparative research papers (including those with rural focus) and journals with comparative research focus. This will serve as a fundamental resource to enlighten students and other users with interest in undertaking comparative studies. The list provided in the report is not a comprehensive one and additional views or comments are greatly welcome in building this piece.

Finally, a special thanks to graduate student Michael Adiyia, Masters student in the Rural Development program at Brandon University for his efforts to conceptualize this report and complete the necessary research.