Scârneci-Domnișoru, Florentina – Visual Data in Social Research

  • visual data. The book – “Visual data in social research” (in original: “Datele vizuale in cercetarea socială”) [2016] – discusses the role of 1) data (of a certain type, namely: visual) in 2) research (this research referring to social science research). In short, this is the summary of the book by chapters. (See also the map). In chapter 1 the book is summarized. The chapter describes i) the context of the writing of the book; and then immerses the reader in: ii) its title, iii) its characteristics, as well as iv) its advantages and disadvantages. The chapter ends with v) the summary of all the chapters. Chapter 2 has two parts. In the first part, an introduction to the topic is made (how many types of data are there, and how many types of visual data); and a definition of visual data is given. In the last part of it, the advantages of visual data are presented, postponing their disadvantages to be presented in chapter 6. Chapter 3 presents i) the history of the use of visual data, and ii) three examples of recording it: the photography, the drawing and the movie. The examples are a) historically documented and b) detailed with works from around the world. Also, related to examples, reference is made to certain types of research, such as: the photo-voice & photo-novella, the graphic elicitation & graphic novel, the participatory video & collaborative video. Next, chapter 4 presents methodological aspects of visual data along some four stages: i) data collection, ii) data processing, iii) data analysis and iv) data interpretation. The 5th chapter focuses on the “research report” as a stage distinct from the other stages related to data as presented in chapter 4. The chapter six follows presenting two important issues: i) the disadvantages of using visual data (as an extension to chapter 2 and chapter 4), as well as ii) the ethical and deontological aspects. The book ends with a conclusion.
  • data stages & research stages. The specialized literature that deals with research methodology offers multiple steps for the researcher to climb towards his/ her success. This topic of stages and steps contains multiple variations, starting from textbooks that treat them more synthetically (offering a limited number of stages, but a big picture); and textbooks that treat them more analytically (presenting up to almost forty stages and, obviously, getting lost in the details). However, the author of the current book – Florentina Scârneci-Domnișoru – proposes a common language in this miniature Babel. She considers that there are seven important stages of research. In addition, she emphasizes the differences between the data stages: i) data collection, ii) data processing, iii) data analysis and iv) data interpretation. Starting from there, I proposed a similar perspective concerning these two aspects: the research stages (see image 1) and the data stages ( see image 2)


Image 1:

Image 2:


  • Florentina Scârneci-Domnișoru (2016): “Datele vizuale in cercetarea sociala”, Presa Universitară Clujeană
  • Florentina Scârneci (2006): “Îndrumar de cercetare calitativă în științele sociale”, Editura Universității Transilvania Brașov
  • Florentina Scârneci-Domnișoru (2018): “Reflections on social research methodology”, Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Brașov,  Series VII: Social Sciences * Law, vol. 11 (60), no. 2, pp. 91-102
  • Florentina Scârneci-Domnișoru (2023): “Data interpretation in social research. A guide to standardising research outcomes and outcome evaluation”, Preprint Paper, (Accessed 09-Feb-24)
  • Florentina Scârneci-Domnișoru (2024): “From sample to population. Generalization in qualitative research”, Preprint Paper, (Accessed 09-Feb-24)

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