This paper addresses the problem of achieving adequate empirical accounts of culture, motivation and attitudes in construction management research. The usual association of adequacy with objectivity, causality and quantification is criticised and it is suggested that the concept of Verstehen provides an alternative guide to study. Within this conception, explanations are not primarily casual in form, but concerned with the investigation and explication of meaning. Criteria developed within the discipline of ethno methodology (EM) and founded in the logic of Verstehen are offered as alternative standards of rigorous analysis. These consist in a requirement to remain faithful to the empirical phenomenon under study to eschew speculation and ad hoc abstraction
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