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Chapter: research methodology Essay

The research was conducted using questionnaires as the main tool of data collection. Questionnaires were used for the research mainly because the research focused on areas and questions that could not be put across verbally through interviews. Advantages of using questionnaires. Questionnaires have the advantage of privacy and secrecy. They were chosen for the research because of the nature of the subject of research (Furedi 2007). Terrorism is a phenomenon that does not go well with many people in Yemen especially after the 2006 attack.

Through the use of questionnaires, the researcher is able to be guaranteed honest and true answers unlike other methods of data collection. A total of 304 replies were received from the people. This was a good number and showed that many respondents appreciated the subject of research. Questionnaires are also used because they are easy to be used by the respondents. The type of language used in the questionnaires is simple and easy to understand. Many respondents tend to prefer the usage of questionnaires as they give them ease in trying to answer the questions posed to them (Toolis 2005).

They also enjoy the advantage of giving the respondent time to reflect on what they had forgotten and give an answer that they think is right rather than being rushed into giving answers without reflecting on them or without being given time to think. If a respondent is given time to research and reflect on what he/she had forgotten, chances are that he/she is likely to give informed answers, opinions and vies. Disadvantages of questionnaires. In some circumstances, questionnaires could be of demerit to both the researcher and the respondent.

Some questions in the questionnaires need explanations by the researcher. Such explanations are normally not accessible as the researchers are always not within reach. Such interruptions may cause the respondent to give information that is not related to the questions asked as a result of misinterpretation of the questions. If such a scenario occurs, the researcher is bound to lose out in the area in which the question was asked and decide either to leave it out or conduct the session again. The other disadvantage of questionnaires is that, they need time for the exercise to be a success.

Drafting of the questions, sending the questionnaires to the respondents, filing of the questionnaires and sending them back to the researcher will take some time which would have been used in other useful areas concerning the research. It is evident that respondents will tend to take some time before responding to the questionnaires posted or delivered to them. The other disadvantage is that when using questionnaires, they are bound to get lost or get into wring hands (Furedi 2007). When they are posted by the respondents, they might get lost along the way and not reach the researcher at all.

In some cases, they may get into wrong hands thus exposing what was meant to be privacy between the researcher and the respondent. Such cases could lead to breach of contract as the respondent might have been promised that whatever he/she says will be confidential to the two of them. On the other hand, the information contained in the questionnaires might also be distorted before it reaches the researcher. This could also lead to misrepresentation of the information by the researcher thus leading to wrong conclusions and false recommendations about the subject matter in discussion.

Secondary Sources of data collection. A variety of sources were used in data collection for the research. Such sources included the CNY’s post-incidence report, documents which as scholarly in nature, government press releases and agencies, the Internet, CNY intranet and other sources that were deemed fit for the research (Cachon 2007). Secondary sources of data collection were used mainly to boost the outcomes of the literature review. The fear of crime and terrorist attacks were addressed partially by the secondary sources rather than the primary sources.

There is information that could not be found using primary sources of data collection. This information included the history of terrorist attacks in Yemen and other relevant past accounts in as far as terrorism is concerned. Books and journals were used closely as they were viewed as the most reliable and important sources of data collection. The Internet came in especially where previous researches were to be used in the writing of the literature review and other sections of the research.

Scholarly materials were used especially where there was need to compare the views of other scholars against those in the research. Such views were so helpful as they gave direction and focus to the research in situations where it thought to be going out of way (Cachon 2007). How to prevent terrorism, how terrorism has been dealt with in the past, how other countries react to terrorism, the effect of terrorism among other issues were addressed by the secondary data. It is therefore important to say that secondary data could not be ignored in any way by the research. How the research was tackled.

When determining on how th research was to be conducted, issues such as accessing the target, the cost of the research and the time available for the research were taken into consideration. The method of conducting the research was one that was intended target the whole CNY’s employees working in Yemen, as well as direct contractors working for CNY. This gave an approximate target of about one thousand employees for the research. The operating structure in Yemen was broken into two field based facilities, a storage terminal on Yemen’s coast and a head office situated in Sana’a (Lakdawalla 2004).

The four locations were part of the population that was targeted by the research. The research tackled the intended research problem through the use of survey research, reinforced by interviews and research that also in the archives. Such a wide field allowed the researcher to gather information that was all inclusive and representative. More and more survey data was gathered by the use of a CNY intranet, questionnaires that were self completed, interviews that were face to face and other sources that were aimed at reinforcing the quantitative data gathered with qualitative data and information available.

Due to the nature of the facilities and the number, it was imperative to design an intranet based questionnaire for the purposes of data collection and analysis. It was believed that all of the population in CNY had access to the company’s intranet, thus making it a more convenient and reliable tool for data collection and analysis. It main advantage was that a large population of people was able to be reached at a relatively low cost. Questionnaire design. During the construction of the questionnaire, several elements were taken into consideration by the researcher (Chapman 2000).

The process was to decide the questions that were to be asked, the wording and sequence of the questions in their precision an also the simplicity and complexity of the questions and wording. The questions were phrased in such a way that respondents found them easy to understand and comprehend with the aim of them not affecting the responses from the respondents. The questionnaires were also made anonymous to the respondents as a result of the cultural sensitivity in Yemen.

All the same, there was a section to be completed regarding whether the respondents preferred to be interviewed and if so, contact details were completed by the researcher. It was however found out that respondents were more than willing to take part in the research especially after being assured that the information they provided would be treated in confidence and that they would remain anonymous. Selection and sampling of the respondents. Members from each department were selected and included both the Yemeni and the expatriates (Chapman 2000).

They were both asked separately if they were willing to have an interview that was face to face. A formal letter describing the objectives and the purpose of the research was mailed to those members that were selected for the research. The rest of the targeted population was emailed with the same letter describing why the research was being conducted. Interviews were also done thereafter as they tend to offer the possibility of the researcher modifying the line of questioning, then following up with interesting lines of investigation in a way that other forms of data collection methods cannot (Chapman 2000).

A structured interview of about 45 minutes was conducted as part of the research collection procedure. The interviews were recorded o both tape and in note form. Due to the nature of the Yemeni culture that discourages recording of interviews, note had to be taken as a cushion to the same. This was done for the Yemeni nationals and not for the expatriates. An email reminder was send to the population that was targeted two weeks after the questionnaires had been distributed. The reminders were repeated after three weeks with the aim of ensuring that all the positions intended were covered.

In order to avoid problems with the questionnaires and the interview design, the questions were piloted on a small sample of the population that was similar to the main surveys respondents. Problems encountered in the Research. There were various problems encountered during the research. Problems included those that were encountered during the process of the research and those that came up during the compilation of data and analysis. One of the problems was the difficulty in convincing people that the questionnaires and the interviews were meant for research purposes and not any other hidden agenda (Pun 2002).

A number of the targeted population were a little bit concerned about the intention of the research. Given that terrorism is a sensitive area of discussion especially in the public domain, it turned out to be very difficult to drive the point home. The fear associated with terrorism made many people shun away from the topic thus leaving the researcher with very little option (Lowry 2002). There was also the problem of finding the needed information. Due to the nature of the Yemeni culture, many respondents were not free enough to give information that they thought was right.

They would give information that they thought could go well with what the questions required and not the real and true position on the ground. This problem led to some information being discarded as it was vetted and found out that it was unrealistic and not practical. The opinion of the respondents could change and even contradict depending with the type of method collection tool used. This was noticed in cases where both the questionnaires and interviews were used on one respondent at different times for data collection. The problem of time was also an issue. The research was to be done within a specific period of time.

This time was short considering the nature of the research that was being done. The respondents were far from each other and this needed time to be able to reach all of them for the research. The process of data compilation and analysis took a lot of time due to the fact that three hundred and four replys were to be analysed. The analysis also required some data to be run using the SPSS program which was not familiar with the researcher. Consultations had to be made with the experts in SPSS and other people who had a thorough understanding of what the program was all about (Lowry 2002).

This also took some time thus affecting the time scheduled for data analysis. As a result, some of the processes of data analysis were crushed so that some of the time could be used for running of data and generation using the SPSS program (Kumar 2008). The issue of bureaucracy also posed a problem during the research. Getting permission from the relevant authorities which included CPF, BAKPF, the head office at Sana’a and the terminal facility was so difficult. Letters had to be written by the university time and again but still the management found it hard to allow the researcher to go ahead with the research.

It was only after several negotiations and pleading that finally the request was granted. The top management feared the fact that the research was aimed at inciting the employees in matters related to terrorism. The effect of the 2006 attack by the terrorists was still fresh in people’s minds and it was feared that any mention of the term terrorism would trigger an atmosphere of fear and animosity. Analysis and Results. The data collected was analysed independently for each of the four CNY locations in Yemen. Different procedures and target hardening initiatives were deployed at each location to meet the specific threat.

Separate analysis of each location was used to identify issues that were unique to each one of them as it would be easier to make specific recommendations for each location in terms of improvement (Lowry 2002). Data from national and expatriate employees also analysed independently with the aim that separate analysis would make it easier to identify any cultural and social differences that could arise between the employees and the fear of crime. The CNY information technology department will be made use of in transferring data from the intranet to the analysis software.

The researcher involved in this research was a working for CNPY at he main field facility. The rotation was in five weeks’ work at Yemen and five weeks’ vacation in the United Kingdom. The rotation was meant at necessitating god planning to ensure that all relevant data input was complete and accessible during the duty. Al the employees in Yemen work in a similar rotation and so it was vital to ensure that all the back to back positions had access to the intranet with the aim of enabling the completion of the questionnaires (Metz 2006).

The work rotations also had their own advantages which included the reduction in the cost of transportation as CNT transport and internal flights would be used by the researcher. There was also the advantage of completing all the research on time and also the fact that data analysis, compilation and writing up of findings would be done during the vacation. The researcher had a back to back in Yemen who could assist with the sending of the late data from the questionnaires in the unlikely event that it would be necessary.


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