The number of studies using biographical narrative data has increased worldwide. Given the variety of analytical approaches in narrative research, a critical investigation of the relationship between the methodological procedures and the implications for research practice is needed. This article reports on a mixed analysis study applying three analytical methods to autobiographical narrative interview data: (1) formal structural analysis, (2) narrative ethnography and (3) qualitative comparative analysis. Comparing these three models exposes key methodological challenges, such as the use of operational definitions and interpretative practice. The article discusses the role of analytical perspectives for biographical research method design and application as a part of mono-methods and mixed-methods studies.
Biography, narrative ethnography, QCA, formal structural analysis, methodological openness