Multiperspectival designs and processes in interpretative phenomenological analysis research

Michael Larkin*, Rachel Shaw, Paul Flowers

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Researchers using interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) within applied research typically use homogenous samples exploring shared perspectives on a single phenomenon of interest. This article explores the challenges and opportunities involved with developing rigorous and epistemologically coherent research designs for capturing more complex and systemic experiential phenomena, through the use of multiple perspectives to explore the same phenomenon. We outline a series of multiple perspective designs and analytic procedures that can be adapted and used across many diverse settings and populations. Whilst building upon existing approaches within qualitative methods and IPA, these designs and procedures are intended to scaffold clear routes to practical application, psychological intervention, the design of behaviour change interventions, and other recommendations for policy and practice. We discuss a variety of conceptual antecedents which situate these designs within phenomenology, pluralistic idiography, qualitative psychology, and wider debates within psychology and other social and behavioural sciences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)182-198
JournalQualitative Research in Psychology
Issue number2
Early online date19 Nov 2018
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019

Bibliographical note

© 2018 The Author(s). Published by Taylor & Francis.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives
License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction
in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way


  • Impact
  • IPA
  • methodology
  • multiple-perspectives
  • systemic


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