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Methodology, Tools, and Systemic Framework for iKBE Competencies Investigation

Overview of Methodologies, Target Stakeholders, and Phases of the Study

Various studies have utilized different approaches, tools, and methodologies in their investigations of competencies. Some studies utilized quantitative methodologies only, while other studies utilize qualitative methods only; however, a significant number of reviewed studies utilized a mixed-methods approach whereby both quantitative and qualitative methods are followed. The tools utilized vary from literature views, to surveys, workshops, focus groups, interviews, road maps, etc. Table 6.1 shows an example of studies and their utilized methods and tools; a more extensive list can be found in Appendix C.

The methodology of the assessment included a mixed-methods approach whereby both quantitative and qualitative methods were utilized. The target stakeholders were from both industry and academia. The study was conducted in two main phases: (1)—exploratory and (2)—larger scale.

The following personnel were targeted from industry: (1)—business managers, (2)—training department personnel, (3)—human resources personnel, and (4)— alumni/practicing engineers. In academia, both (1)—senior students and (2)— academics were targeted. Almost, all major engineering disciplines were included in the investigation such as architecture, chemical engineering, civil engineering, computer engineering and science, electrical engineering, industrial engineering, and mechanical engineering. All groups’ responses were analysed both qualitatively and quantitatively.

The project is divided into two phases:

  • • Phase I: Exploratory investigation
  • • Phase II: Larger-scale investigation

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017 73

M. Abdulwahed and M.O. Hasna, Engineering and Technology Talent for Innovation and Knowledge-Based Economies,

DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-46439-8_6

Table 6.1 Summary of research methodologies

References

Methodology components

Data analysis method (qualitative/quantitative)

USA

Literature review, surveys

Mixed

USA

Workshops, discussions, surveys, focus groups

Mixed

AUS

Survey

Quantitative

Canada

Focus groups

Qualitative

US

Survey, interview, literature review

Mixed

Phase I: This initial phase has been critical in gathering information that later on shaped instruments and planning for the next larger phase of the project. In-depth interviews were conducted with representative personnel of the majority of targeted stakeholders.

Phase II: Instrument surveys were further refined and developed based on exploratory findings in Phase I. Surveys were then distributed for all targeted stakeholders for quantitative data collection.

In the next sections, further details on the utilized qualitative and quantitative methodological approaches are provided.

 
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