QuaRC stands for Qualitative Research & Consulting and was founded by me in 1996. The idea for the name came from Dr. John Seidel, creator of the program The Ethnograph and my first employer (www.qualisresearch.com). The name was in part inspired by the bartender Quark in the television series "Spaceship Enterprise", as John had a personal preference for this character in the film, and the acronym fitted.
Apart from the bartender in Spaceship Enterprice, a ‘quark’ is one of the indivisible building blocks of matter. The existence of quarks was postulated in 1964 by Caltech physicist Murray Gell-Mann together with his colleague George Zweig. In 1994, after 30 years of research, the "Top Quark" was found - the "missing piece of the puzzle", the long sought last of the twelve allegedly smallest building blocks of matter.
Qualitative data analysis is often also like playing a puzzle. Data is broken down into small units, i.e., they become like pieces of a puzzle. In putting them back together, developing a category system that describes your data, using it to explore and analyse your data, you gain new insights. See also the essay by John Seidel: Qualitative Data Analysis.
Reflected in the acronym QuaRC are the core competencies of my company: Qualitative research, qualitative method training and project consulting.
I started her academic career at the University of Bonn studying Nutrition and Home Economics. After a second pre-diploma specializing in the area of home economics, I continued my study program at the University of Oregon in the USA finishing with a Master of Science in Family Resource Management and Marketing. Writing my Master Thesis, I discovered my interest in qualitative research method and computer-assisted procedures for data analysis.
My initial contact with CAQDAS tools was from 1992 to 1994, as I was employed at Qualis Research in the USA. In following years, I worked with the CAQDAS Project in England (1994 – 1996), where I taught classes on THE ETHNOGRAPH and Nud*ist (today NVivo). Two additional software programs, MAXQDA and ATLAS.ti, followed shortly.
During my dissertation in the area of consumer economics and in my subsequent position as an Assistant Professor at the Institute of Marketing at the Copenhagen Business School in Denmark, I carried out a variety of research projects using both qualitative and quantitative methods. From 2004 to 2011, I taught qualitative and quantitative research methods at the Sociology Department at the Leibniz University of Hannover.
I have accompanied numerous projects around the world in a consulting capacity, authored didactic materials, the ATLAS.ti User’s Manuals, sample projects and other documentations. My book “Qualitative Data Analysis with ATLAS.ti” published with SAGE publications.
My academic home today is the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity in Göttingen (Germany), where I pursues her methodological interest, especially with regard to computer-assisted qualitative data analysis. My most recent publications are a paper entitled “Qualitative data analysis software: The state of the art, and one on “Computer-assisted Grounded Theory Analysis with ATLAS.ti”.
The scientist at heart, who knows very well that the demands of everyday life often demand a pragmatic approach. I help and support clients according to the requirements they face and the contexts in which tasks have to be accomplished. Shaped by the Anglo-Saxon and Scandinavian world, I design my events in a relaxed, open atmosphere. Competence and knowledge need not hide behind complex phrases or formalities. My goal is also to present complex contexts in such a way that it is understandable for the target group.