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2nd QCA Expert Workshop in Zurich, Switzerland, 5-7 November 2014

Posted 26/11/2014

After a successful 1st QCA Expert Workshop last year, the 2nd Workshop made Zurich again the centre of the QCA event calendar in 2014.

From 5-7 November, more than 25 scholars from Europe and the USA gathered for 2 days to present their work, discuss ideas, and to establish contacts across different disciplines, including political science, sociology, management and education.

Together with my two co-organizers Johannes Meuer (University of Zurich) and Michael Baumgartner (University of Geneva), we had put together a high-calibre list of presentations in various areas of configurational comparative research with QCA: small vs. large-N QCA (Claude Rubinson, Benoît Rihoux), sensitivity and robustness in QCA (Dominik Schraff, André Walter, Adrian Du┼ča, Judith Glaesser, Barry Cooper), epistemological issues (Barbara Vis, Michael Baumgartner), process tracing and QCA (Carsten Schneider, Tina Trujillo), econometric methods and QCA (Edwin Amenta, Christian Rupietta), and panel data and QCA (Charles Ragin, Johannes Meuer).

In the closing panel debate, provocatively titled "Should QCA set aside its algorithms?" after a recent article by David Collier, current developments in the field were actively discussed among the panellists and the audience.

Against the background of the recent flurry of polemical anti-QCA articles emanating from the University of California Berkeley and the journal Political Analysis, this event provided comforting proof that many in the community seek to make constructive contributions and further increase our knowledge about and the applicability of configurational comparative methods.

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