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Part of Oxfam’s Research Guidelines series, this guideline gives an overview of how to organize and conduct focus group discussions for qualitative research. Focus groups help to answer the ‘who’, ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions by allowing researchers to draw out respondents’ feelings, beliefs, attitudes, experiences and reactions in a way that is often not feasible using other methods. They are particularly useful for planning further data collection or to enrich and support existing data. Preparation, conduct, techniques, tips and reporting are all covered. This paper was originally written in 2015 by Vivien Walden and was updated in 2019 by Martin Walsh.

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