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Case study research for events: Home


This guide has been prepared to assist you when researching your case study for LEI2006. 

Your research is based around a case study reflecting an emergency, crisis or disaster within an event. Your tutor has provided some examples on your NILE module site as a starting point. You are required to critically evaluate the nature of the incident and what has (and has not) been learned.

How to approach your chosen topic

Once you know what event you are looking at, you can start to plan how you are going to search for relevant information to examine this fully. It may help to form a series of questions to frame your search, such as:

  • how have legal bodies or how has the government responded to what has happened?
  • What official discussions have taken place?
  • Has anything changed to make it safer for the future? For example, if it is a sporting disaster, what changes have been made to avoid the same thing happening again?

There are also a number of questions outlined in the assignment brief that you use to develop a research plan.

Planning your search

Before you begin your research, it is worth doing a bit of planning up front. Consider your research questions and the different search words that relate to this. These are what we would call keywords. You can map these out in a way that helps you to carry out your searches and come up with different search strategies. Here is an example search table:

Keyword table
Manchester bombing Safety Change
Manchester arena Security Developments
Terrorist incident Security measures

Lessons learned

Emergency services Risk assessment

From here you can develop meaningful search strategies e.g. Manchester bombing and safety / Manchester arena and risk assessment

Indentifying credible sources

Although, you may find academic and practitioner sources through the library resources, you will need to research more widely for a range of perspectives on your chosen case.

It is expected that you will use carefully selected reports and materials from the searching the Web, but you need to make sure that these are good quality sources. 

There are lots of different methods you can use to evaluate web based sources and one of those is the CRAAP test.  Here is a video that explains how you can apply the CRAAP method when selecting your sources.

Types of sources

Depending on your chosen emergency/incident, you could find there is a wealth of good quality material or very little to choose from. Either way, you will still need to make some decisions about the sources you use. In most cases, using the primary source will be better than a secondary source, for example:

Preferred source Alternative source
The report on an independent public inquiry to investigate the deaths of the victims of the 2017 Manchester Arena terror attack A website talking about the report
Report from Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Investigation into Various Technical Aspects prepared for the Court of Inquiry in relation to the Hillsborough Disaster The Jeremy Vine show or a blog post discussing the report

If you are looking at secondary sources, for example websites or blogs, it is important to consider the author and their credentials when making your selections. In other words, avoid using commercial or popular blogs and opt for ones that are adjunct to recognised credible bodies instead. Also, try to use a variety of sources and avoid too many news stories.

Google smart searching

Google smart searching techniques will be beneficial for your case study research, especially the site:. and filetype: options seen in the video below. Why not have a go with your topics?


Useful library resources

Although, they may not be your first place to look, don't forget to explore some of the library resources for additional content. You can use NELSON or search databases individually. Here are some suggested databases:

Academic Librarian

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Joanne Farmer

Other helpful resources