We live in a time of change: for a certain time our world was dominated by experts; today algorithms and neural networks hold the spotlight. Data analytics enables to see patterns and sidestep the “declarative level.” It is more efficient in telling what is happening, still that is rarely enough to understand why something is happening.
“Insight” has different meaning in qualitative research and data analytics.
In qualitative research, insight refers to a deep understanding of a phenomenon. It allows to gain a new perspective on a subject, discover underlying themes, and get a better understanding of people's motivations and behaviors.
In data analytics, on the other hand, insight refers to actionable information. It helps identify trends or patterns in the data, discover correlations between different variables or make predictions.
While both forms of insight can be valuable, they are distinct concepts and should not be confused with one another. In many cases, it seems beneficial to use both methods in order to gain a well-rounded understanding of a phenomenon.
For example, qualitative research can provide insight into the reasons behind certain trends or patterns that are identified through data analytics, while data analytics can help to confirm or refute hypotheses that are generated through qualitative research.
One of the key strengths of qualitative research is that it allows researchers to explore complex, multi-faceted phenomena in a way that is not possible with quantitative methods. This can provide valuable insights that are not readily apparent from more objective, numerical data.
Qualitative research is not suitable for every situation, but it can be a valuable tool for gaining a deeper understanding of complex phenomena. AI algorithms can assist with certain aspects of qualitative research, but it is unlikely that qualitative research can be fully automated, because the key tasks, such as conducting interviews or focus groups, or analyzing text or other materials, require human judgment and expertise.
"It ain't what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so."