Macro-qualitative (MQ) approaches to the study of regime transformation can be defined as those that (a) in order to describe or explain macro-level phenomena (b) predominantly use qualitative data and (c) make claims about these phenomena in terms of set relations. MQ approaches can be static or dynamic and are normally used for single-case or small- to medium-N-sized studies. The set of methods employed in MQ research thus defined ranges from qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) to sequence elaboration and process tracing. Classics in the MQ transformation literature can be interpreted in terms of set theory. For instance, Lipset (1959) famously claimed that there are social conditions that are necessary for the functioning of democracy.
Keywords: necessity, sufficiency, set relations, qualitative comparative analysis (QCA), process tracing, sequence elaboration, limited empirical diversity, logical remainders, simplifying assumptions, multi-method research
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