Triangulation of Methods in Labour Studies in Nigeria: Reflections on the Benefits and Challenges
One of the distinctive aspects of social science research in Nigeria as in other parts of the world is the desire to ensure that procedures followed in a study are scientific so that findings can be replicated and generalized. This has made some social scientists to adopt exclusively a quantitative method in their investigations while relegating qualitative methods to the background. In labour studies, adopting only quantitative method to studying workers does not always tell the full story about the workers, rather it de-contextualizes the study. This paper examines critically the utility and the challenges of triangulating quantitative and qualitative methods in labour studies in Nigeria. It argues that triangulating methods not only closes methodological gaps but gives workers a voice as part of way of promoting international best practices in research and scholarship in the contemporary social science research. The paper concludes that in as much as triangulation of methods is desirable in labour studies, however, it will not substitute for validity resulting from appropriateness, thoroughness and effectiveness with which methods are applied.
Key words: Labour studies, triangulation of methods, questionnaire, in-depth interview, social research.