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Industry/government work options for qualitative research?


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Hi again, GradCafe Psych subf:


I will try to keep this brief.


I am entering a qualitative/humanistic-oriented psych PhD program in August. Though I'm not anticipating landing a faculty post afterward (anything can happen, but this is the safe assumption), I believe enrolling is still the right move for me to make at this point. Worst comes to worst, I can leave with a master's after a couple of years.


Would anyone here happen to know of specific needs or upward trends (be they existing or reasonably projected) for qualitative research in industry or government? I've read a few articles arguing for its demand increasing in certain areas (e.g., in marketing and social media analytics and advocacy orgs), but I can't be sure about the extent to which they are reflecting the reality of things.


Assuming I don't enter academia following the completion of my qualitative psych PhD, what specific job options or roles might be reasonably within my reach? That is to say: How can I make my particular graduate training and experience work for me to make a reasonable living, while also maximizing my senses of creative, intellectual, and productive work engagement? I am also entertaining the possibilities of doing independent contracting or consulting (or self-employment, but this is the vaguest conceivable option by far). Would probably also enjoy being a liberal arts college prof., but I'm guessing =>decent positions aren't very easy to obtain.


Thanks in advance. If it would help, I can note which program I will be entering; but for now, I will say that it has strong stakes in the local clinical/counseling community and various social justice causes. (I have substantive clinical/healthcare experience, just as a care coordinator/project lead and not a clinician/psychotherapist. I am also learning some programming languages and about computing in general, and intend to keep this up and work on projects as time permits.)

Edited by Zinnia_SS
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