Call for Abstracts

Empirical researchers have demonstrated a growing interest in understanding causally complex phenomena in a configurational and comparative manner, particularly by means of set-analytic approaches such as Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) and related methods. However, until now there has existed no venue in the Americas that brings together the diverse set of researchers and practitioners working with configurational methods and approaches.

In creating the Annual QCA Conference of the Americas (AQCA), we aim to provide such a venue for the broad, cross-disciplinary community of QCA empirical researchers and methodologists, offering the opportunity to gather to present and receive feedback on current research projects, share theoretical and methodological developments, and discuss new directions in research practices. Our goal is to create a supportive environment for the community to meet, engage in dialogue, network, learn, and collectively move forward on advancing the configurational perspective.

AQCA is a broad-tent, inclusive, and diverse venue that is open to everyone interested in learning about and advancing the configurational-comparative agenda. We welcome contributions from all theoretical traditions and fields and encourage theoretical, empirical, and methodological contributions that aim to capture configurational and causally complex phenomena. We are especially interested in empirical applications of QCA from applied researchers and scholars working outside of the traditional QCA strongholds of sociology, political science, and management, including but not limited to fields such as anthropology, education, environmental studies, information systems, medicine, health policy, policy monitoring and evaluation, tourism, and others.

AQCA is a face-to-face conference with hybrid elements allowing remote audience participation. While we ask presenters to attend in person, the keynotes, paper presentations, and panel discussions will be live streamed with remote attendees able to participate in the Q&A. Afternoon roundtables and workshop discussions will focus on in-person participants to facilitate engagement and community building.

With this call, we are soliciting paper and poster presentations of empirical applications as well as theoretical and methodological work advancing the configurational perspective. The general theme of ACQA is: How does the configurational perspective generate novel insights into causally complex phenomena? With this broad umbrella in mind, some topics we are eager to explore include but are not limited to the following:

  • What are the latest developments in configurational analysis, both theoretically and methodologically? How can we best move forward the knowledge frontier in configurational analysis?
  • What are differences in how QCA is being used across disciplines and fields? What novel insights might this generate about our ability to understand configurational phenomena?
  • What are some of the key challenges for practitioners in applying the configurational-comparative lens? What developments would advance the use of configurational and comparative methods for applied fields?
  • How do our current theories need to be adapted to better incorporate a configurational-comparative perspective? What changes in our thinking and theorizing does this require?
  • How can configurational and comparative methods be combined with other methods, including correlational and qualitative approaches? What are the tradeoffs and what synergies might be created?

Regardless of your field or topic, if you use QCA and/or other configurational methods or if you are considering using them, then AQCA is for you. Whether your work is empirical, methodological, or theoretical; whether you are a seasoned practitioner or have just discovered QCA, we hope that you will join us for three days of lively discussions, debates, community building, and learning.

Submission Guidelines

We invite participants to submit an abstract of 250–500 words by Friday, November 18 at https://conferencebit.com/qca-conference-of-the-americas-2023/. We are accepting three types of proposals:

  • In-person paper presentations
  • In-person poster presentations
  • Virtual poster presentations

For empirical projects, results must be included in the abstract (project proposals will not be accepted). To ensure a strong and balanced program, the conference organizers may accept paper presentations as posters or assign them for small-group discussion. All posters (both in-person and virtual) will receive feedback from seasoned QCA scholars.