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This paper performs a comparative analysis of the Positivist and Critical Realist paradigms and investigates the impact of both on a proposed research study. An overview of each philosophy is provided in terms of their origins and applications and the core tenets of each are presented. Positivism and Critical Realism are then analysed collectively in order to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of each research philosophy. The impact of both Positivism and Critical Realism on a proposed research study is addressed with particular reference to how each philosophy would benefit the research outcome. Based on this discussion, the Positivist approach is chosen as the most suitable research philosophy for the present study given the scope and nature of the project and the phenomena being observed.
Rosane Cavalcante Fragoso, Brasil
Chief Scientific Officer and Head of a Research Group
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