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Streamline Your Literature Review and Research Analysis Using Citavi and NVivo

Streamline Your Literature Review and Research Analysis Using Citavi and NVivo

Mar. 27, 2024
Lumivero
Published: Mar. 27, 2024

Developing a literature review is one of the most important — and difficult — components of the research process. A well-executed literature review helps you determine the direction and design of your research, uncovers gaps in current knowledge, and helps you understand different theoretical frameworks for your topic – all crucial steps before starting your research and data analysis to help answer your research question.

We’ve discussed in a previous blog post what makes for a compelling and useful literature review. This post will look at practical steps for using Citavi, our reference management software, in combination with NVivo, our qualitative data analysis software, to streamline the literature review creation process.

It’s an approach developed by Dr. Can Arik, a data analyst and research consultant. He believes that NVivo and Citavi can combine forces to help scholars create their own literature databases and conduct more sophisticated qualitative research thematic analysis of their references and data. He calls this combined approach his Universal Strategy for Literature Management.

What a Literature Management Strategy Offers

In his presentation, Dr. Arik described three major benefits his Universal Strategy for Literature Management offers:

  • A secure and adaptable strategy for writing academic papers and books, either individually or collaboratively
  • The creation of an expandable, updatable literature database for the subjects you specialize in
  • The ability to conduct in-depth thematic analysis of literature within that database, allowing for more sophisticated understanding of where there are gaps in the research worth expanding on
  • The first phase of this strategy involves developing your literature database.

Creating Your Literature Database – Gather Sources and Collect Data

Dr. Arik notes that most scholars in the social sciences focus on a few different subjects throughout their careers. Maintaining a literature database of sources about each subject can help you be prepared to conduct a literature review or collaborate with other scholars. Maintaining that literature database requires dedication to adding, organizing, and categorizing new sources regularly. Citavi makes this process simpler.

With Citavi, you can gather sources by:

  • Importing books and papers you’ve gathered elsewhere through DOI or IBSN numbers
  • Capturing information off the web with Citavi’s picker extension
  • Searching a range of databases from within Citavi to find additional sources — including many full-text sources
  • Create a Citavi project for each subject within the topic you’re researching. Once you’ve pulled together your initial sources — gathering full-text content where you can — you can then start analyzing them with NVivo.

Conducting Qualitative Research Thematic Analysis in Your Literature Database

The next step in the literature management strategy is to pull your resources into NVivo and begin your thematic analysis. Fortunately, NVivo makes analyzing and visualizing qualitative data sources simple.

Create NVivo projects for each topic in your subject area, then import the sources from the corresponding Citavi projects you created. Dr. Arik notes that it’s helpful to import each resource as “Author and Year,” and create a case within NVivo for each. This will make the data analysis process cleaner.

Begin reading and making notes on your sources, writing down queries and identifying key themes or topics. Code each resource for different themes. NVivo can generate a thematic matrix for each topic that helps you visualize the frameworks different authors use, as well as the main points of their research. This matrix is Dr. Arik’s preferred tool to analyze data, but NVivo can also create other visualizations, such as word clouds, that you may find useful for generating insights.

Once you’ve conducted your research analysis, you’ll return to Citavi to categorize your work. Assign each reference to knowledge categories based on your analysis.

To update your literature database, repeat this process whenever you find new, well-written resources — pull them into Citavi with as much text as possible, analyze in NVivo, and then assign to categories in Citavi. You’ll maintain this master literature database in Citavi and create duplicates of it whenever you want to write a paper or book project based on sources it contains.

Writing Your Literature Review and Preparing for Data Analysis

Once you’ve developed your literature database and analyzed it, you can begin writing.

Dr. Arik outlines a solo writing process and a collaborative writing process. The main difference between the two is the issue of cloud collaboration. While teams that are using the same versions of NVivo and Citavi can work in the same document anywhere in the world with NVivo Collaboration Cloud — including a built-in chat in Citavi — members using older versions may have to share sources and materials manually.

Steps to Start Writing

  • First, make a duplicate of your Citavi literature database and rename it with the title of your paper. If you are sharing with colleagues, do this now.
  • Head to NVivo and make a new folder in the Codes section named after your paper.
  • Import the sources from your Citavi database. Read, notate, and code the sources.
  • Create a qualitative research thematic analysis matrix (or word cloud) for your project.
  • Go back to Citavi and assign codes from your NVivo project to categories.
  • Create a Word document, export your Citavi categories to an outline, and begin writing.
  • This streamlined process combines the features of Citavi and NVivo to help you develop a more sophisticated understanding of the research and create the outline of your literature review faster.

Try Citavi and NVivo for Your Research Analysis and Literature Review

Interested in trying the Universal Strategy for Literature Management for yourself? You can request demos of both Citavi and NVivo to see how these two tools combine to help you organize research materials and conduct sophisticated qualitative research thematic analysis that can lead to more impactful literature reviews. Request your demo today!

REQUEST A DEMO OF CITAVI

REQUEST A DEMO OF NVIVO

NVivo Demo Request

Developing a literature review is one of the most important — and difficult — components of the research process. A well-executed literature review helps you determine the direction and design of your research, uncovers gaps in current knowledge, and helps you understand different theoretical frameworks for your topic – all crucial steps before starting your research and data analysis to help answer your research question.

We’ve discussed in a previous blog post what makes for a compelling and useful literature review. This post will look at practical steps for using Citavi, our reference management software, in combination with NVivo, our qualitative data analysis software, to streamline the literature review creation process.

It’s an approach developed by Dr. Can Arik, a data analyst and research consultant. He believes that NVivo and Citavi can combine forces to help scholars create their own literature databases and conduct more sophisticated qualitative research thematic analysis of their references and data. He calls this combined approach his Universal Strategy for Literature Management.

What a Literature Management Strategy Offers

In his presentation, Dr. Arik described three major benefits his Universal Strategy for Literature Management offers:

  • A secure and adaptable strategy for writing academic papers and books, either individually or collaboratively
  • The creation of an expandable, updatable literature database for the subjects you specialize in
  • The ability to conduct in-depth thematic analysis of literature within that database, allowing for more sophisticated understanding of where there are gaps in the research worth expanding on
  • The first phase of this strategy involves developing your literature database.

Creating Your Literature Database – Gather Sources and Collect Data

Dr. Arik notes that most scholars in the social sciences focus on a few different subjects throughout their careers. Maintaining a literature database of sources about each subject can help you be prepared to conduct a literature review or collaborate with other scholars. Maintaining that literature database requires dedication to adding, organizing, and categorizing new sources regularly. Citavi makes this process simpler.

With Citavi, you can gather sources by:

  • Importing books and papers you’ve gathered elsewhere through DOI or IBSN numbers
  • Capturing information off the web with Citavi’s picker extension
  • Searching a range of databases from within Citavi to find additional sources — including many full-text sources
  • Create a Citavi project for each subject within the topic you’re researching. Once you’ve pulled together your initial sources — gathering full-text content where you can — you can then start analyzing them with NVivo.

Conducting Qualitative Research Thematic Analysis in Your Literature Database

The next step in the literature management strategy is to pull your resources into NVivo and begin your thematic analysis. Fortunately, NVivo makes analyzing and visualizing qualitative data sources simple.

Create NVivo projects for each topic in your subject area, then import the sources from the corresponding Citavi projects you created. Dr. Arik notes that it’s helpful to import each resource as “Author and Year,” and create a case within NVivo for each. This will make the data analysis process cleaner.

Begin reading and making notes on your sources, writing down queries and identifying key themes or topics. Code each resource for different themes. NVivo can generate a thematic matrix for each topic that helps you visualize the frameworks different authors use, as well as the main points of their research. This matrix is Dr. Arik’s preferred tool to analyze data, but NVivo can also create other visualizations, such as word clouds, that you may find useful for generating insights.

Once you’ve conducted your research analysis, you’ll return to Citavi to categorize your work. Assign each reference to knowledge categories based on your analysis.

To update your literature database, repeat this process whenever you find new, well-written resources — pull them into Citavi with as much text as possible, analyze in NVivo, and then assign to categories in Citavi. You’ll maintain this master literature database in Citavi and create duplicates of it whenever you want to write a paper or book project based on sources it contains.

Writing Your Literature Review and Preparing for Data Analysis

Once you’ve developed your literature database and analyzed it, you can begin writing.

Dr. Arik outlines a solo writing process and a collaborative writing process. The main difference between the two is the issue of cloud collaboration. While teams that are using the same versions of NVivo and Citavi can work in the same document anywhere in the world with NVivo Collaboration Cloud — including a built-in chat in Citavi — members using older versions may have to share sources and materials manually.

Steps to Start Writing

  • First, make a duplicate of your Citavi literature database and rename it with the title of your paper. If you are sharing with colleagues, do this now.
  • Head to NVivo and make a new folder in the Codes section named after your paper.
  • Import the sources from your Citavi database. Read, notate, and code the sources.
  • Create a qualitative research thematic analysis matrix (or word cloud) for your project.
  • Go back to Citavi and assign codes from your NVivo project to categories.
  • Create a Word document, export your Citavi categories to an outline, and begin writing.
  • This streamlined process combines the features of Citavi and NVivo to help you develop a more sophisticated understanding of the research and create the outline of your literature review faster.

Try Citavi and NVivo for Your Research Analysis and Literature Review

Interested in trying the Universal Strategy for Literature Management for yourself? You can request demos of both Citavi and NVivo to see how these two tools combine to help you organize research materials and conduct sophisticated qualitative research thematic analysis that can lead to more impactful literature reviews. Request your demo today!

REQUEST A DEMO OF CITAVI

REQUEST A DEMO OF NVIVO

NVivo Demo Request

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