Case Study Research in Practice

This book, written by Helen Simons, guides the user in the design, implementation and communication of case study research. It provides a step-by-step guide to case study research at the same time as addressing misconceptions and challenges that researchers may face. It also provides a variety of examples to demonstrate the key ideas and messages of the book.

This book is available for purchase from Sage Publications

The following sample chapters are also available for free download from Sage.


"My focus in this book is on qualitative case study to understand the complexity of that ‘instance in action’, ‘bounded system’, or ‘authenticated anecdote’. Subjective data are an integral part of the case. It is through analysis and interpretation of how people think, feel and act that many of the insights and understanding of the case are gained. It acknowledges that you are the main instrument in data gathering, interpretation and reporting. While this is significant in all forms of research, in a single case and with qualitative methods, the ‘self’ is more transparent, and it is important to monitor its impact on the research process and outcome. This is more than noting its inescapable influence in a preface. It is a rigorous exploration of how your values and actions shape data gathering and interpretation and how people and events in the field impact on you. You learn about yourself, in other words, as well as about the case." (Simons, 2009)


  • Part One: Getting Started
    • Evolution and Concept of Case Study Research
    • Planning, Designing, Gaining Access
    • Listen, Look, Document: Methods in Case Study Research
    • Listen, Look, Document: Methods in Case Study Research
  • Part Two: In the Field
    • Who Are They? Studying Others
    • Who Are We? Studying Our ‘Self’
    • Whose Data Are They? Ethics in Case Study Research
    • Mid-term Letter
  • Part Three: Making Sense
    • Begin at the Beginning: Analysis and Interpretation
    • From Data to Story: Examples in Practice
  • Part Four: Telling the Story
    • Start at Any Point: Reporting and Writing
    • Dispelling Myths in Case Study Research


Simons, H. (2009). Case study research in practice. London: SAGE Publications Ltd. Retrieved from