s responsible for the production of knowledge and/or theory, he/she was not responsible for its implementation or its practice (Green and Levin, 1998). Within the matrix of traditional research models, therefore, the researcher was neither reflector nor practitioner.
The traditional research model constrained itself and limited its potentialities for the articulation of consistently practical, applicable and relevant knowledge. Delimiting the role of the researcher to collector, organiser, interpreter and disseminator of knowledge prevents researchers from reflective engagement with the topic of enquiry and, thus, detracts from the final output itself – the research. This, at least, ids the position held by a significant number of researchers (Reason, 1994; Park, 1999; Green and Levin, 1998; Reason and Bradbury, 2001; Bray et al., 2002).
Having outlined the primary difference between traditional and non-traditional/reflective research, this present research shall now explore the strategies by, and through, which the researcher may integrate reflective approaches into qualitative enquiry projects. More specifically stated, following a definition and discussion of reflective research and its variant forms and strategies, the research will look into its potential contributions to a qualitative study on the social impacts of e-commerce.
Reflective research represents both a reconsideration of the principles upon which traditional research is founded and, a break with it. The traditional research model, as briefly noted in the introductory paragraphs, demands separation between research and practice, between the researcher and the practitioner. Indeed, within the matrix of the research activity and the subsequent utilisation of its output, the roles of either are clearly separate. As Bray et al. (2002) note, the researcher’s role is confined to the production of findings and the practitioner’s role is the application of, and reflection upon, those