Objectivity in Social Research: A Critical Analysis

  • Dr Mukesh Kumar Khatwani
  • Dr Farida Yasmin Panhwar†
Keywords: Qualitative research, Objectivity, Subjectivity, Human behaviour, Cultural settings


This literature review paper discusses the term ‘Objectivity’ in qualitative research, its importance in social research, and various issues related to establishing objectivity in social research. The paper aims to improve the skills of the novice social researchers and readers. Since more than five decades, the use of qualitative research has been increased in academically developed countries (i.e. USA, UK, Germany, France etc.), and the use of qualitative research in institutions of developing countries has also been witnessed in recent past. Qualitative research explores several areas related to human behaviours and socio-cultural settings/environments. As human behaviours and nature of human interactions are ever changing, hence, the question of objective research arises and makes social research more subjective. Therefore, this study primarily aims to critically analyse the stance of social researchers on objectivity in social research and discuss the possible factors, which may influence qualitative research. Thus, the paper providing the deliberation on objectivity in social research inspires the novice researchers for the development of qualitative research instead of traditional method, deductive, in social research.