CoM.2: Expert Interviews

CoM.2: Expert Interviews

Relevance:
Expert interviews are another core method used in FenRIAM in order to collect qualitative information and numerical data.

Description:
Interviews are one of the most largely used methods for collecting in-formation from an entire social group, a representative sample, or a single expert. Interviews can collect both, quantitative and qualitative data. The way interviews are structured (e.g. strict interview schedule, semi-structured, open) and their design (e.g. types of ques¬tions asked and response options) determine the relative degree of the qualitative or quantitative nature of the interview. Open questions lead to a more explorative character of interviews; close questions with predefined response options focus on gathering information about predefined hy-potheses. Often a combination is useful. Interviews can be conducted as face-to-face inter¬views (group or single) or telephone interviews.

Procedure:

  • Define the type of requested expertise
  • Identify suitable experts and contact information
  • Select among them the desired interviewee
  • Prepare a guideline for the interview (introduction with information for the interviewee and interview questions)
  • Contact the interviewee and make a date
  • Conduct the interview and record the responses (notes or voice recorder – the latter to be agreed before!)
  • Prepare a written record of the interview

Data sources (examples, not complete):

  • Scientific experts involved in the proposal preparation (e.g. scientific manager)
  • Technical experts involved in the proposal preparation (e.g. chief project engineer)
  • Scientific and technical experts from potential investors
  • Scientific and technical experts from comparable facilities and projects
  • Scientific and technical experts from the concerned external communities (e.g. users, suppliers, collaborators, customers)
  • Internal and external experts for specific aspects (civil engineering, ecological environment, work security, radiation protection, local economy, public relations, education & training, ...)

Definitions:
An expert is a person with specific and particularly deep knowledge and/or high skills with respect to the aspects that are studied by the interview.

References:
Standard textbooks