The contribution of case study design to supporting research on Clubhouse psychosocial rehabilitation

Toby Raeburn, Virginia Schmied, Catherine Hungerford, Michelle Cleary

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
189 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Psychosocial Clubhouses provide recovery-focused psychosocial rehabilitation to people with serious mental illness at over 300 sites in more than 30 countries worldwide. To deliver the services involved, Clubhouses employ a complex mix of theory, programs and relationships, with this complexity presenting a number of challenges to those undertaking Clubhouse research. This paper provides an overview of the usefulness of case study designs for Clubhouse researchers; and suggests ways in which the evaluation of Clubhouse models can be facilitated. Results: The paper begins by providing a brief explanation of the Clubhouse model of psychosocial rehabilitation, and the need for ongoing evaluation of the services delivered. This explanation is followed by an introduction to case study design, with consideration given to the way in which case studies have been used in past Clubhouse research. It is posited that case study design provides a methodological framework that supports the analysis of either quantitative, qualitative or a mixture of both types of data to investigate complex phenomena in their everyday contexts, and thereby support the development of theory. As such, case study approaches to research are well suited to the Clubhouse environment. The paper concludes with recommendations for future Clubhouse researchers who choose to employ a case study design. Conclusions: While the quality of case study research that explores Clubhouses has been variable in the past, if applied in a diligent manner, case study design has a valuable contribution to make in future Clubhouse research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number521
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2015


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