Citation Uny I, France E & Noblit GW (2017) Steady and delayed: explaining the different development of meta-ethnography in health care and education. Ethnography and Education, 12 (2), pp. 243-257. https://doi.org/10.1080/17457823.2017.1282320
Abstract Since its inception in the 1980s, the meta-ethnography approach for synthesising qualitative study accounts has been used extensively in health and social care research and to a lesser extent in educational research. The aim of this article is to reflect on the evolution of the method in both fields. It starts by describing the meta-ethnography approach, charts the rise of evidence-based research in health-related research, and explores the growth in the rate of published health-related meta-ethnographies. It proceeds by offering some explanation for the slower growth in the use of meta-ethnography in educational research. It explains this using the history of the early developments of qualitative approaches in Education and their underpinning paradigms. It then discusses key meta-ethnographies conducted in education, comparing those to more recent ones, in terms of methodological development. The article concludes by drawing lessons about how the conduct of meta-ethnography may be improved in any discipline.