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SUMMARY Generally, academic research is conducted within paradigms, which represent a researcher's particular way of thinking about a subject matter and which are shared with other like minds. When an area of inquiry is in its infancy and there are no scientific theories from which to hypothesize, such research can only begin by induction. Knowledge in this case begins with collecting facts and then trying to find some order in them in a process known as inductive reasoning. Inductive reasoning begins with observations and measures, detects patterns and regularities, formulates some tentative hypothesis that can be explored and finally ends up developing some general conclusions or theories. It is open-ended and exploratory and where the knowledge sought is inseparable from the situational and personal aspects of those involved, some degree of generalization can be achieved by making allowances for local and personal influences. This paper outlines a number of research problems associated with compulsory land acquisition and compensation in Nigeria and describes an innovative methodological approach to research in this field. It discusses various philosophical and theoretical orientations underlying the study, explains the qualitative nature of the research and elaborates on the research strategies and data collection protocols. An account is also given on how the nature of a research problem can influence the choice of a research methodology; how data collection protocols are applied in empirical data collection; including an explanation of how all the major parts of the research design worked together to address the identified research questions. The study is based on constructionist and interpretive research paradigms, phenomenological and empiricist epistemologies, and ontological assumptions that reality is subjective and multiple. This orientation is based on the premise that human experience makes sense to those who live in it prior to all interpretation and theorizing (Creswell, 2003) and as such it determines what is studied and the methods used to study them. The methodology also links the philosophy to the research methods that were used. This is an innovative approach which opens new challenges for real estate research by applying phenomenology in data collection, and doing phenomenological analysis and interpretation resulting in information rich findings.
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TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
1/18
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and
Compensation
Iyenemi Ibimina KAKULU, Nigeria, Peter BYRNE, United Kingdom and
Kauko VIITANEN, Finland
Key words: Phenomenology, qualitative research, research paradigms, compulsory
acquisition, compensation, research methodology.
SUMMARY
Generally, academic research is conducted within paradigms, which represent a researcher’s
particular way of thinking about a subject matter and which are shared with other like minds.
When an area of inquiry is in its infancy and there are no scientific theories from which to
hypothesize, such research can only begin by induction. Knowledge in this case begins with
collecting facts and then trying to find some order in them in a process known as inductive
reasoning. Inductive reasoning begins with observations and measures, detects patterns and
regularities, formulates some tentative hypothesis that can be explored and finally ends up
developing some general conclusions or theories. It is open-ended and exploratory and where
the knowledge sought is inseparable from the situational and personal aspects of those
involved, some degree of generalization can be achieved by making allowances for local and
personal influences. This paper outlines a number of research problems associated with
compulsory land acquisition and compensation in Nigeria and describes an innovative
methodological approach to research in this field. It discusses various philosophical and
theoretical orientations underlying the study, explains the qualitative nature of the research
and elaborates on the research strategies and data collection protocols. An account is also
given on how the nature of a research problem can influence the choice of a research
methodology; how data collection protocols are applied in empirical data collection; including
an explanation of how all the major parts of the research design worked together to address
the identified research questions. The study is based on constructionist and interpretive
research paradigms, phenomenological and empiricist epistemologies, and ontological
assumptions that reality is subjective and multiple. This orientation is based on the premise
that human experience makes sense to those who live in it prior to all interpretation and
theorizing (Creswell, 2003) and as such it determines what is studied and the methods used to
study them. The methodology also links the philosophy to the research methods that were
used. This is an innovative approach which opens new challenges for real estate research by
applying phenomenology in data collection, and doing phenomenological analysis and
interpretation resulting in information rich findings.
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
2/18
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and
Compensation
Iyenemi Ibimina KAKULU, Nigeria, Peter BYRNE, United Kingdom and
Kauko VIITANEN, Finland
1. INTRODUCTION
In recent years, social sciences researchers have become increasingly aware of the array of
quantitative and qualitative paradigms and methods available for use by researchers and this
paper explores the application of these methods in real estate research. The choice of a
suitable research methodology (Nolan, 1997), is based on the nature of the research problem
and the researcher’s philosophical orientation and assumptions. According to Patton, (2002)
the underlying values of research as stretch across a continuum and scholars can be most
effective when they utilize the continuum at any point that answers the research question.
There are currently three widely accepted research paradigms in education and in the social
and behavioural sciences which are quantitative research; qualitative research and mixed
research. Quantitative research relies primarily on the collection of quantitative data and
follows the paradigm characteristics of the positivist and post positivist researcher while
qualitative research relies on the collection of qualitative data. Pure qualitative research will
follow the paradigm characteristics of the constructionist / interpretivist researcher while
mixed research is research that involves the mixing of quantitative and qualitative methods
and pragmatic paradigm characteristics which can take many forms. In fact, the possibilities
for mixing are almost infinite.
Philosophical and theoretical assumptions and considerations guide the conduct of all
research, even where it is not stated explicitly within the context of the final research report.
From a review of related texts (Creswell, 2003; Patton, 2002; Lincoln, 2000), a number of
issues are considered which include ontological considerations, epistemological, axial,
rhetoric and methodology. Theory is about starting points and research usually relies on
theory to justify starting with pre-commitments to independent variables, background factors,
or structural conditions that will explain historically and geographically varying phenomena.
However, to start by trying to describe the phenomena to be explained as they exist for the
people living them, we need theory of another sort, a theory of social ontology that indicates
the lines of inquiry required to produce a complete description. If on the other hand we start
research by describing the nature of social phenomena as they are experienced, it will make a
difference in structuring data gathering; in developing a research craft capable of seeing
practice, interaction manoeuvres, and tacit embodiment; in shaping a research agenda; and
ultimately where we end substantively. This paper suggests the need for a paradigm shift from
the traditional pattern of commencing first with a literature review to a more diagnostic
approach which first of all taps the human perceptions of their first hand experiences of
certain phenomena before or alongside with the literature review. Any bias which might be
introduced by the process of first of all conducting a literature review, is somewhat reduced
and a researcher is in a better position to review a problem within its own context and setting
before looking for similarities or differences with that of published literature.
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
3/18
Phenomenological Research
Phenomenology literally means the study of phenomena and is both a philosophy and a
research strategy. It is a way of describing something that exists as part of the world in which
we live such as events, situations, experiences or concepts. We are surrounded by many
phenomena which we are aware of but may not fully understand and our lack of
understanding of these phenomena may exist because the phenomenon has not been overtly
described and explained or our understanding of the impact it makes may be unclear. The
central focus in phenomenology is exploring how people make sense of their experiences
individually and as a shared meaning which requires rigour and detail to achieve. According
to Patton (2002, p.104), the term phenomenology has become so popular and has been so
widely embraced that its meaning has become confused and diluted. It can refer to a
philosophy; an inquiry paradigm; an interpretive theory (Denzin and Lincoln 2000b:14); a
social science analytical perspective or orientation; a major qualitative tradition (Creswell
1998) or a research method (Moustakas, 1994).
Phenomenological research begins with the acknowledgement that there is a gap in our
understanding and that clarification or illumination will be of benefit. According to Hannock
(1998), phenomenological research will not necessarily provide definitive explanations but it
does raise awareness and increases insight. Creswell (1998) cites (Bruyn, 1966) who states
that phenomenology serves as the rationale behind efforts to understand individuals by
entering into their field of perception in order to see life as these individuals see it. There is
not one phenomenological methodology but rather a variety of methods that all hold to the
primacy of the subjective experience. Phenomenological analysis requires the researcher to
state his or her assumptions regarding the phenomenon under investigation and then bracket
or suspend these preconceptions in order to fully understand the experience of the subject and
not impose any a priori hypothesis on the experience. A phenomenological study may be
challenging to use because the researcher requires a solid grounding in the philosophical
precepts of phenomenology; the participants in the study need to be carefully chosen to be
individuals who have experienced the phenomenon; bracketing personal experiences by the
researcher may be difficult, the researcher needs to decide how and in what way his or her
personal experiences will be introduced into the study (Creswell 2003). The use of
phenomenology as a philosophy and research methodology in compulsory land acquisition
and compensation research is explored in greater detail with a case study from Nigeria in
sections 4 to 6 of this paper.
2. COMPULSORY LAND ACQUISITION AND COMPENSATION
Compulsory acquisition or purchase is the process by which local and national governments
obtain land and premises for development purposes when they consider this to be in the best
interest of the community. The process of valuation for compensation in compulsory acquisition
of land takes place within distinct legal; cultural; socio-economic; political and historical
environments which influence the delivery of the process by key actors in it. The basic principles
are perceived to be quite similar even though the practice may vary in different nations or
regions, the assessment of compensation is usually influenced by local and national statutes,
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
4/18
enactments or laws that provide the basis upon which existing professional standards and
methods may be applied (Viitanen and Kakulu, 2008). The term compulsory acquisition has a
number of connotations (Kakulu, 2008), which include compulsory purchase, expropriation, land-
take or eminent domain. In all cases the owners or occupiers are denied their property rights for
overriding public interest or public benefit and are usually entitled to just and adequate
compensation. Valuation for compensation within the context of this study refers to valuation that
is undertaken to determine the value of loss to the property owner, tenant or occupier in the event
of compulsory acquisition of their landed property assets.
There are a number of observable problems associated with compulsory acquisition and
valuation for compensation in different parts of the world (Alterman, 2007); (Crawford,
2007); (Kakulu, 2007); (Plimmer, 2007); (Nuhu, 2007), and (Viitanen and Kakulu, 2008).
This paper however concentrates on recent studies on processes and methods in compulsory
land acquisition and compensation in the Niger Delta Region of Nigeria which is no exception
(Kakulu, 2008) with regards to the problems of land acquisition and where the disparity in
valuation figures over the same parcel in compulsory acquisition valuations can be quite
enormous. While it is possible that multiple valuations of the same parcel of land will no
doubt produce different estimates of value due to the interplay of subjectivity and also
depending on whom the client is (acquiring body or land owners), the variation may be
ignored where it is insignificant. The nature of disparity in figures in valuation for
compensation by valuers in Nigeria is such that valuers may lose credibility and this is
happening slowly as the preference for negotiation and settlement without valuation is
becoming more popular. Most times this wide disparity is created intentionally by valuers to
present a stronger position for negotiation but again the acquiring authorities may capitalize
on this position and apply rule-of-thumb approaches to make payments, disregarding the
contents of both valuation reports. The nature of the research problem necessitated the use of
a methodology that would capture the problem scenario in detail and enable meaningful
conclusions to be drawn. This led to the application of phenomenology both as an underlying
philosophy and a research methodology. Phenomenology can indeed be extended to other
aspects of research within the real estate disciplines.
3. RESEARCH DESIGN FRAMEWORK
The design of the study began with the selection of a topic and the identification of a suitable
research paradigm within which to conduct the study. These two became the basis on which
all the other parts of the research was designed to fit into a logical whole. Following a review
on research methodology concepts, the research design was developed from a combination of
two research design models developed by Crotty (1998) and Creswell (2003). In the course of
the study, their classifications were adopted and modified slightly into four sequential steps
with each preceding step forming the basis of decisions and choices in subsequent steps and
clearly exhibiting a linear relationship as illustrated in figure 1 below.
The framework in Fig. 1 was used to develop the Research design for the case study. It is
based on the premise that the nature of the research problem and the associated paradigm
which is essentially the researchers’ worldview constitutes a whole framework of beliefs,
values and methods within which research takes place and is explained as follows:
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
5/18
Figure 1 - Framework for Research Design
Choose a research
paradigm based on
the nature of the
research problem
Choose an appropriate approach
in line with your paradigm
Choose A research
strategy deri ved
from your approach
Choose Data collection
methods consistent with
Your chosen strategy
STEP 2
STEP 1
STEP 3
STEP 4
Source: Kakulu (2008)1
Step 1
Research paradigms are representations of different combinations of philosophical
assumptions, epistemologies and ontological theories which may also be classified as schools
of thought. Creswell (2003) describes four schools of thought as Social Constructivism /
Interpretivism ; Positivist / Post Positivist ; Advocacy / Participatory; and Pragmatism. These
schools of thought or research paradigms as often described are the foundations on which the
three fundamental approaches to research (qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods) are
based. The philosophical theories which guided this research were Social Constructionism /
Interpretivism and phenomenology.
Step 2
The underlying philosophical paradigms have a direct impact on the nature of the inquiry or
subsequent approach to the study which may be either a qualitative, quantitative or mixed
methods approach. Denzin (2000) defines qualitative research as multi-method in focus,
involving an interpretive, naturalistic approach to its subject matter. This means that
qualitative researchers study things in their natural settings and attempt to make sense of or
interpret phenomena in terms of the meanings people bring to them. Qualitative research
involves the studied use and collection of a variety of empirical materials; case study;
personal experience; introspective; life story interview; observational; historical; interactional;
and visual texts that describe routine and problematic moments and meaning in individuals'
lives. The field of qualitative research resembles a patchwork quilt, built piece-by-piece using
perspectives and methods from just about every stop along the social scientific spectrum.
1 Kakulu, I.I. (2008) Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Reading
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
6/18
Accordingly, qualitative research deploys wide range of interconnected methods, hoping
always to get a better fix on the subject matter at hand. It can be used differently by a
multitude of disciplines, studying just about anything.
Both kinds of research try to see how society works, to describe social reality, to answer
specific questions about specific instances of social reality. Some of the fundamental
differences between qualitative and quantitative approaches are the sharp differences in
ontology and epistemology between the qualitative and non-qualitative camps. Each of the
features of qualitative research may be viewed as strengths or as a weakness. This depends on
the original purpose of the research. For example, one common criticism against qualitative
research is that the results of a study may not be generalizable to a larger population because
the sample group was small and the subjects were not chosen randomly. But the original
research question may have sought insight into a specific subgroup of the population, not the
general population because the subgroup is “special” or different from the general population
and that specialness is the focus of the research. The small sample may have been necessary
because very few subjects were available such as is the case with some ethnic groups or
patient groups suffering from a rare condition. In such studies, generalizibility of the findings
to a wider, more diverse population is not an aim.
Step 3
Research strategies are linked to the approach and so should flow from it. For instance, it
would be methodologically incorrect to perform experiments in a qualitative study or conduct
open ended interviews in a quantitative study. Qualitative research uses multiple methods that
are interactive and humanistic and involve active participation by participants and sensitivity
to the participants in the study. This is particularly important for research in the real estate
disciplines. Researchers look for involvement of their participants in data collection and seek
to build rapport and credibility with the individuals in the study. Qualitative research
strategies were employed in the data collection and analysis phases of the study. Creswell
(1998) divides qualitative research into five main strategy types which are: phenomenology; a
biography; grounded theory; ethnography; case study. Phenomenology and Case Study
strategies with foundations in phenomenological epistemologies formed the basis on which
the data collection protocols were designed and used.
Step 4
The data collection protocols should aim to match the chosen research strategies in order to
create harmony in the methodology. According to Yin (2003, pp.97-101), the use of multiple
sources of evidence in the development of converging lines of inquiry is known as
triangulation and research findings are much more convincing and accurate when based on
several sources of information. In qualitative research it is perhaps more accurate to speak of
modes of analysis rather than data analysis (Myers, 1997). These modes of analysis are
different approaches to gathering, analyzing and interpreting qualitative data and the common
thread is that all qualitative modes of analysis are concerned primarily with textual analysis
(whether verbal or written).
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
7/18
4. LAND ACQUISITION AND COMPENSATION – A CASE STUDY ON NIGERIA
The practice of compulsory acquisition and compensation in Nigeria, is characterized by the
absence of clear and consistent statutory provisions; communities that are dissatisfied with the
quantum of compensation paid to them resorting to violence and litigation; valuers who
because they are constrained by statute tend to lean towards the dictates of the parties they
represent (Kakulu, 2008). Also, the dearth of documented and published literature on the
subject with the Nigerian context, also informed the use of an innovative research
methodology such as phenomenology.
The above scenario raised two major research questions, namely:
1. Does the existing valuation environment promote or hinder the process of valuation
for compensation in Nigeria, and
2. Is the valuation process responsible for the assessment of compensation values that are
considered to be inadequate, unfair and unjust?
a. Objectives of the Study
The main objective of the study was to identify the underlying factors responsible for the
dissatisfaction with the quantum of compensation and the following specific activities were
undertaken.
1. An analysis of professional practice procedures and methods which focussed on
valuers’ conformity with or deviation from established statutory provisions;
2. An assessment of the different perceptions and interpretations of the whole concept of
compulsory acquisition and compensation by key actors in the process;
3. An assessment of the factors responsible for the wide disparity in property values
between different valuers valuing the same parcel of land;
4. An appraisal of the current valuation environment and its influence on the assessment
and payment of compensation;
5. A comparative analysis of statutory procedures for compulsory purchase or
acquisition.
A range of more specific questions were addressed in order to answer these core questions
using an innovative approach to data collection, analysis and interpretation. These included
the possibility of achieving adequate compensation; the responsibility in determining
adequate compensation; the valuers’ role in the process, and the role of other key actors. The
general thrust of the research is that if valuation methods are to reflect the foundations of the
cultural setting in which they occur, then the Nigerian valuation environment had to be better
understood. A logical starting point was to identify difficulties that valuers experience in this
field of practice while adhering to existing statutory enactments using a methodology rooted
in phenomenology.
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
8/18
b. Research Propositions
Figure 2 Research Propositions
CRISES IN TH E NIGER
DELTA REGION
TURBULENCE IN
OIL AND GAS
SECTOR
PROBLEMS IN LAND
ACQUISITION
HOSTILE
COMMUNITIES
INADEQUATE
COMPENSATION
ADEQUATE
COMPENSATION
RECEPTIVE
COMMUNITIES
SOLUTIONS TO LAND
ACQUISITION
SUSTAINABLE OIL
AND GAS SECTOR
SOLUTIONS TO NIGER
DELTA CRISES
STUDY
BACKGROUND
EXPECTED
OUTCOMES
RESEARCH PROPOSITIONS
R
E
S
E
A
R
C
H
Source: Kakulu, 2008 2
In the illustration above, the current situation in the Niger delta region is depicted by the
boxes to the left side of the diagram, labelled ‘study background’. These are flat boxes
containing some of the current problems in the Niger Delta, narrowing down to the problem
of inadequate compensation. On the right side of the diagram, labelled ‘expected outcomes’,
the 3-dimensional boxes represent the expected contributions of the study to the Niger Delta
phenomena based on the following propositions:
1. Payment of adequate compensation to individual land owners or occupiers and
communities in oil producing areas of the Niger Delta may improve their receptiveness to
the oil and gas production activities of the Federal Government through its joint venture
partners.
2. Problems related to inadequate compensation are likely to reduce if the payments are
more adequate, and this could lead to a more sustainable oil and gas sector.
3. For adequate compensation to be paid, the effect of the valuation environment on the
process needs to be closely examined, understood and overhauled where necessary to
enable valuers function in a professional manner. Figure 2 is a graphical presentation of
the link between the research problems and propositions. It also defines the boundaries of
2 Kakulu, I.I. (2008) Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Reading
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
9/18
the research.
5. CASE STUDY RESEARCH DESIGN
Having considered various options in line with the research questions, the design framework
presented earlier in Figure 1 was used to design the study shown in Figure 3 below.
Figure 3 Case Study Research Design
Constructionist /
Interpretivist;
Subjective;
Phenomenology
A Qualitative Approach to Inquiry
Phenomenology and Case Study
Interviews and Questionnaires;
Document reviews
NATURE OF
INQUIRY
PHILOSOPHICAL
CONSIDERATIO NS
RESEARCH
STRATEGIES
DATA COLLECTION
METHODS
Source: Kakulu (2008)3
a. Philosophical Considerations
The study was based on constructionist and interpretivist theories and a philosophical
orientation in social constructionism which sees knowledge through an alternative process
and set of assumptions. It stems from an epistemological position which focuses on meaning
and power. It has a relativist epistemology and aims to account for ways in which phenomena
are socially constructed and how meaning is ascribed to phenomena. It expects that if existing
literature cannot provide solutions to the problem, then the researcher is expected to look into
the matter by studying the empirical object. Social Constructionism takes a critical stance
towards taken-for-granted knowledge but accepts rather that knowledge is subjective and
advocates the historical and cultural specificity of a research problem. Its main characteristics
are that knowledge is subjective, theories are time and culture bound and language is a pre-
condition for thought. It seeks understanding, develops subjective meanings, relies on
participants’ views of the phenomena and constructs meaning. The researcher seeks to
interpret meanings, inductively generates meanings, and recognizes biases and individual
3 Kakulu, I.I. (2008) Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Reading
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
10/18
perspectives. Social Constructionism can also be thought of as a theoretical orientation which
to a greater or lesser degree underpins newer approaches, which are currently offering radical
and critical alternatives in psychology and social psychology, as well as in other disciplines in
the social sciences and humanities (Burr 1995).
b. Qualitative Approach
A qualitative approach was considered to be an appropriate approach for this study judging
from the nature of the research problem, the research questions and the philosophical and
theoretical orientations of phenomenology. Since qualitative research is made up of complex,
context-dependent variables, it may be helpful to examine and compare certain aspects of
qualitative inquiry with quantitative (or non-qualitative) study to provide justification for its
choice as the nature of enquiry in this particular study which could also be applicable to other
forms of real estate research.
1. Qualitative designs are naturalistic to the extent that the research takes place in real
world settings and the researcher does not attempt to manipulate the phenomenon of
interest. The phenomenon of interest unfolds naturally because it has no predetermined
course established by and for the researcher such as would occur in a laboratory or other
controlled setting typical of quantitative studies.
2. Qualitative research may also be defined as exploratory and descriptive in focus; having
an emergent design and not a fixed one. Data collection takes place in the natural setting
with the researcher being an instrument of data collection and inductive analysis is on-
going.
3. Qualitative research is concerned with the opinions, experiences and feelings of
individuals producing subjective data. It describes social phenomena as they occur
naturally and understanding of a situation is gained through a holistic perspective.
4. The researcher identifies, studies, and employs one or more traditions of inquiry. It is
the problem that the researcher seeks to understand, not a causal relationship of
variables or a comparison of groups.
5. Qualitative studies include detailed methods, a rigorous approach to data collection, data
analysis, and report writing. This means, too, that the researcher verifies the accuracy of
the account using one of the many procedures for verification.
6. Qualitative research places emphasis on understanding through looking closely at
people's words, actions and records while the quantitative approach to research looks
past these words, actions and records to their mathematical significance and quantifies
the results of these observations.
7. The task of the qualitative researcher is to find patterns within those words (and actions)
and to present those patterns for others to inspect while at the same time staying as close
to the construction of the world as the participants originally experienced it.
8. Qualitative research is perspectival and subjective unlike quantitative which hold
objective views. Qualitative research is exploratory and seeks to discover and interpret
data while quantitative research relies on proof.
9. The goal of qualitative research is to discover patterns which emerge after close
observation, careful documentation, and thoughtful analysis of the research topic. What
can be discovered by qualitative research is not sweeping generalizations but contextual
findings.
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
11/18
c. Phenomenological Research Strategy
The Phenomenological research method is primarily an attempt to understand empirical
matters from the perspectives of those being studied. This type of study describes the meaning
of lived experiences for several individuals about a concept or a phenomenon. It involves
obtaining data from multiple individuals who have experienced the phenomenon. According
to Moustakas (1994, p.13-15) the empirical phenomenological approach involves a return to
experience in order to obtain comprehensive descriptions that provide the basis for a reflective
structural analysis that portrays the essence of the experience. Accordingly, the human
scientist determines the underlying structures of an experience by interpreting the originally
given descriptions of the situation in which the experience occurs. Moustakas describes a
series of distinct steps involved in empirical phenomenology after Eckartsberg (1986) as
follows:
a. The problem and question formulation in which the researcher delineates a
focus of investigation by formulating questions in such a way that they are
understandable to others.
b. The data generating situation which considers data collection protocols that
involves querying the persons and dialoguing with them.
c. The third step is the data analysis, explication and interpretation. Once
collected data is read, scrutinized so as to reveal their structure, meaning and
configuration, coherence and the circumstance of their occurrence.
Phenomenology aims at gaining a deeper understanding of the nature or meaning of our
everyday experiences. The focus of a phenomenological inquiry (Patton 2002, p.106), is
a. What is important to know is what people experience and how they interpret
the world.
b. The only way to really know what another person experiences is to experience
the phenomenon ourselves as directly as possible.
These two points imply participant observation and in-depth interviewing as a research
protocol.
d. Phenomenological Research Process
There are certain major processes in phenomenological research which give it its distinct
qualities as a research method and which were applied in the conduct of the study. They are
elaborated here for greater emphasis and understanding of the methodology.
1. Epoche is a Greek word meaning to stay away from or abstain. It helps the researcher
prepare to derive new knowledge where the researchers predilections, prejudices,
predispositions are set aside allowing a fresh look at things. It is very useful in
phenomenal research because it helps to dampen the influence of the past knowledge.
Studies and accounts of land acquisition and compensation in Nigeria had been largely
anecdotal and not based on research. The use of this method encouraged a temporary
setting aside of all such accounts and entering the field making a fresh start with the
intention of discovering new ideas. Epoche gives the researcher the vantage point of
holding in abeyance, previous experiences on phenomena and challenges him or her to
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
12/18
create new ideas, new feelings, new awareness and understanding about an old problem. It
encourages receptiveness to situations just as they appear without imposing any pre-
judgements on what we see, think, imagine or feel. It helps to suspend everything that
interferes with fresh vision about a phenomenon. Even the researchers biases are set aside
as well as prejudgments to enable him see the issue with new and receptive eyes.
Although in reality this is not completely possible, the use of open-ended interviews and
focus group interviews helped to achieve this during the study.
2. Phenomenological Reduction. This involves reading through the transcripts of the
interviews or data from other research protocols and horizonalization of data which
involves regarding every horizon as having equal value. Listing meaning and meaning
units. Clustering of these meaning units into common categories.
3. Imaginative Variation. Phenomenal analysis is done to facilitate the development of
individual; textural and structural descriptions of meanings and essences. From themes
developing textural descriptions of the experience.
4. Synthesis of Meaning. From the textural descriptions, integrate the textures and structures
to construct the essence of the phenomenon.
These four steps represent the some of the steps in phenomenological research which were
applied to this study.
e. Data Collection Strategy.
Data collection methods consistent with the philosophical, theoretical and methodological
assumptions of the study were employed during the data collection stages of this work. The
researcher requires not only a solid grounding in the philosophical precepts of
phenomenology but the participants in the study need to be carefully chosen to be individuals
who have experienced the phenomenon. Bracketing personal experiences by the researcher
may be difficult and the researcher needs to decide how and in what way his or her personal
experiences will be introduced into the study. Another justification for the use of this method
is that lack of documented accounts of the practice of valuation for compensation, the current
political climate and the unwillingness of people to discuss openly issues in connection with
Oil and Gas production in Nigeria made this method a preferred option. Such methods
included in-depth interviews, short interviews, focus group discussions, other data collection
methods, group interviews, individual interviews, and document reviews were employed. See
Figure 4 below.
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
13/18
Figure 4 Data Collection Strategy
QUESTIONNAIRE SURVEY
FOCUS GROUP
INTERVIEWS
GROUP
INTERVIEWS
VOLUNTEER
COMMENTARIES
IN-DEPTH
INTERVIEWS
PERSONAL
INTERVIEWS
DOCUMENT REV IEWS
Source: Kakulu (2008)4
At an early stage in the research process, pilot interviews were conducted with very
prominent and senior members of the Real Estate profession in Nigeria in order to obtain their
perceptions on the study area and a feel for the sort of interest this study would generate.
Although these preliminary interviews did not form part of the data collection phase, their
outcome helped to clearly define the structure of the research and also influenced the fine-
tuning of the research questions that were used to conduct the interviews. The data collection
phase commenced with the administration of semi-structured questionnaires to Estate
surveyors and valuers to obtain their perceptions, views and comments on the phenomenon.
Semi-structured questionnaire were used because this afforded respondents to make
independent responses to the questions asked and reduce researcher bias which a structured
questionnaire would have introduced. Also, Estate surveyors and valuers are the key players
in the land acquisition and compensation in Nigeria. A quick analysis was done on the
questionnaires prior to the focus group interviews which flowed from it. The group interviews
and individual voluntary interviews were organized immediately after the focus group
sessions. Individual in-depth interviews were conducted after the voluntary interviews and the
data collection process ended with document reviews. The use of multiple sources of evidence
is characteristic of a phenomenological research strategy
4 Kakulu, I.I. (2008) Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Reading
Stage 1
Sta
g
e 2
Stage 3
Stage 4
Stage 5
Stage 6
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
14/18
f. Data Analysis and Presentation
Phenomenological data analysis steps are generally similar. The original protocols are divided
into statements, the units transformed into clusters of meaning and expressed as concepts; the
concepts are tied together to make a general description of the experience and how it was
experienced. The phenomenological report ends with a better understanding of the essence of
the experience. Many methods have been used in phenomenological research. Frequently,
inductive or qualitative methods involve transcribing material (usually interview transcripts),
coding data into themes and drawing conclusions regarding the phenomena based on these
themes. The raw data of a phenomenological study are personal experiences which may be
gathered through interviews, observation, reading, writing, and living. Literature, poetry,
biography, and art are rich sources of lived experiences. Data analysis was aided by an
innovative analytical model described as the Bow-tie-Butterfly – (BB) model which was used
to organize qualitative data making it possible to analyze this data quantitavely. (Kakulu,
2008)
6. FINDINGS
Using the phenomenological approach, the findings of the study painted a rich picture of the
subject matter summarized as follows:
a. Ambiguity and Lack of Clarity of the Relevant Statute
The Land Use Act is the main statute governing land acquisition and the assessment of
compensation in Nigeria. The laws dealing with land acquisition are not clear and there is
ambiguity with regards to who is entitled to compensation. The absence of clear explanations
is a hindrance to uniform and consistent interpretation and so valuers tend to flout the
provisions contained therein. This is partly responsible for the existence of multiple
interpretations of its contents by key actors in the process. Furthermore the Act conflicts with
the existing (traditional) land ownership patterns. It was also recommended that such a
revision should incorporate all the known and existing principles of valuation.
Another finding is that statutes relating to land acquisition for oil and gas purposes make no
provision for outright acquisition by the Oil and Gas companies. From the foregoing there is
no other statutory basis for the assessment of compensation for oil and gas related acquisition
apart from the Land Use Act. The only provision made by the alternative statute is for
application fees to the appropriate authority, rents for the 20-year lease and royalties to land
owners during this period.
b. Problems with Prescribed Methods of Assessment
The application of statutory methods of valuation as contained in the Land Use Act are
unacceptable to most of the respondents and participants because they are considered to be
grossly inadequate for achieving fair or adequate compensation. The heads of claim are not
clearly defined and in most cases are incomplete. Suggestions were made for the inclusion of
additional heads of claim such as gaming rights, remediation costs for the loss of ancestral
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
15/18
homes, and other quantifiable and non-quantifiable losses including sentimental value. There
is no harmony between the land tenure pattern and the prescribed methods of valuation for
compensation.
c. Crop Enumeration Method
The widely practiced crop enumeration method was severely criticised and the main issues
raised were that the method is crude, the rates are usually too low and in most cases outdated,
and that people suffer deprivation because of the paltry sums paid to them. It is also perceived
that the use of rates is legally wrong because it does not ascribe value at all. The crop
enumeration method of valuing agricultural land does not conform to international practices
and the feeling is that it should be set aside and its use discontinued because it is unfair.
Some are of the opinion that the method is suitable if rates are constantly reviewed and there
were suggestions that ‘Appropriate Officers’ could meet annually and agree to review rates or
propose new rates.
The crop enumeration method does not give the exact number or quantity of crops in an area
and so it should be considered as the estimated value. It is sometimes suitable in certain ways
if the local methods of farming are taken into consideration. Some of the problems associated
with the use of crop enumeration include the absence of clear definition as to how crops are
classified into their grades of maturity (i.e. post mature, mature, and immature or seedling).
The use of rates is seen as an unjust practice and the general feeling is that the method needs
to be reviewed, since it limits the amount of compensation that is paid and this contributes to
the current restiveness in the society.
d. Anomalies in the Agricultural Valuation Process
The process of valuing farmland and agricultural valuation as a whole needs complete
overhauling to bring it in line with the minimum acceptable international standards as much
as possible. The current practice by which a physical numerical count of crops on individual
farms is simply multiplied by a pre-determined rate and then interpreted as value is
unacceptable to most valuers. The discrepancies in values occasioned by the use of the crop
enumeration method are not there because the method is bad.
e. Over-valuation and Under-valuation of Interests.
The general feeling is that valuers work from the answer to the question. They value
according to the dictates of the clients they represent and tend to manipulate figures to satisfy
their clients. Valuers representing acquiring authorities manipulate their figures to correspond
with budgetary provisions for the particular acquisition in question and this is usually
achieved by the use of low multiplier rates, usually State or Federal government rates. On the
other hand, valuers representing communities manipulate their figures to achieve desired
compensation figures by introducing names of non-existent claimants (‘ghost names’) and
counting of crops that do not exist, which inflates the overall value.
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
16/18
f. Lack of Standards and Clear Definition of the Functions of Government Agencies
There appears to be a complete misinterpretation of some of the provisions of the Land Use
Act. The law does not provide for the use of rates as it obtains in practice but makes provision
for the Appropriate Officer to define a rate to be used. There are also no clear guidelines or
documented procedures regarding the process or the roles or responsibilities of different
stakeholders. Lack of standard bases and methods of valuation for compensation in Nigeria
and the use of non-professionals in ascertaining value are some of the problems associated
with the process of land acquisition and assessment of compensation.
There are statutory conflicts and some of the provisions of government policy are quite
subjective, leaving room for multiple interpretation. There is the general feeling that standards
are urgently required and their development should be the collective responsibility of all
stakeholders in the process. The absence of guidelines is partly responsible for the alarming
discrepancies. A code of practice is required, which would guide all the parties involved as it
would make the process easier and possibly reduce the disparity in values. Local practice
methods fit our environment even though they may not be suitable for the international
community, owing to the fact that our policies on land are not the same. If the methods are
standardized, there will be closer convergence between the estimates of different surveyors
and the differences will be insignificant.
7. CONCLUSION
This paper describes phenomenology as a diagnostic research tool and how it can be applied
to real estate research. The benefits of the methodology is that it creates room for research
problems to be studied within the context in which they occur allowing those who experience
a phenomenon first hand to give an account of their own perceptions of these experiences
before any theorizing. It is a rather tedious methodology involving the use of multiple data
collection protocols within the same study. Although it is rather qualitative in nature, it lends
itself to quantitative data analysis. The method needs to be applied with rigour and used by
researchers who are dogged. Although it appears like a departure from traditional research
patterns in real estate disciplines which usually commence with a literature review, it
produced rich information in a comprehensive narrative. However, the absence of an initial
extensive review of literature could lead to re-inventing the wheel which makes it more useful
in under-researched fields.
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Alterman, R. (2007) The “Legitimate Public Purpose” for Land Expropriation.
http://www.tkk.fi/Yksikot/Kiinteisto/FIG/pdf-files/Alterman_presentation.pdf
Burr, V. (1995). An Introduction to Social Constructionism, London, Routledge.
Bruyn, S. T. (1966) The Human Perspective in Sociology: The Methodology of Participant
Observation. Volume, DOI:
Crawford A. J. (2007). Compulsory Acquisition of Land South East Queensland, Australia.
http://www.tkk.fi/Yksikot/Kiinteisto/FIG/pdf-files/07092007Crawford
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
17/18
Creswell, J. W. (2003). Research Design Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Methods
Approaches. USA, Sage Publications.
Creswell, J. W. (1998). Qualitative Inquiry and Research Design: Choosing Among Five
Traditions. Thousand Oaks, Carlifornia, Sage Publications.
Crotty, M. (1998). The Foundations of Social Research: Meaning and Perspectives in the
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Denzin, N. K., Lincoln, Y.S, Ed. (2000). The Handbook of Qualitative Research. Thousand
Oaks, CA, Sage.
Hannock, B. (1998). "Trent Focus for Research and Development in Primary Health Care: An
Introduction to Qualitative Research."
Kakulu, I.I. (2008) An analysis of Processes and Methods in Compulsory land Acquisition
and Compensation. Unpublished Doctoral Thesis – University of Reading
Moustakas, C. (1994). Phenomenological Research Methods. Thousand Oaks, CA, Sage.
Nuhu, M.B. (2007) Compulsory Acquisition and Payment of Compensation in Nigeria: A
Case Study of Federal Capital Territory (Fct) Abuja.
http://www.tkk.fi/Yksikot/Kiinteisto/FIG/pdf-files/06092007Nuhu
Patton, M. Q. (2002). Qualitative Research and Evaluation Methods. Carlifornia, Sage.
Plimmer. F. (2007) Compulsory Acquisition and Compensation in the UK.
http://www.tkk.fi/Yksikot/Kiinteisto/FIG/pdf-files/06092007Plimmer
Viitanen, K., and Kakulu, I.I. Global Concerns in Compulsory Purchase and Compensation
Processes. Integrating Generations, FIG Working Week Stockholm, Sweden June 14-19
2008
Yin, R. K. (2003). Application of Case Study Research., Sage Publications.
CONTACTS
Mrs Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu
Department of Estate Management
Rivers State University of Science and Technology
P.M.B. 5080 Port Harcourt,
NIGERIA
Tel. +234 803 705 5178; + 44 7766593660
E-mail: ibkakulu@hotmail.com
Prof. Peter K. Byrne
Department of Land Management and Development
The University of Reading
Whiteknights, Reading
England, RG6 6AW
UNITED KINGDOM
Tel. +44 (0)118 378 6340
E-mail: p.j.byrne@reading.ac.uk
TS 7E – Compulsory Purchase and Compensation and Valuation in Real Estate Development
Iyenemi Ibimina Kakulu, Peter Byrne and Kauko Viitanen
Phenomenological Research in Compulsory Land Acquisition and Compensation
FIG Working Week 2009
Surveyors Key Role in Accelerated Development
Eilat, Israel, 3-8 May 2009
18/18
Prof. Kauko Viitanen
Helsinki University of Technology
Department of Surveying
P.O. Box 1200
FIN-02015 TKK
FINLAND
Tel. + 358 9 451 3870
Fax + 358 9 465 077
E-mail: kauko.viitanen@tkk.fi
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The ruling of the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal (1999) states that the Land Use Act (LUA) does not apply to lands within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Ipso facto. The distinction between urban and non-urban Land created by the Land Use Act is not applicable within the territory. Hence only the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) is competent to grant Rights of Occupancy in respect of land within the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. This paper examines how land may be acquired in FCT with particular emphasis on the payment of compensation; it reveals that, apart from delayed payment of compensation, current provisions of the law cannot adequately compensate dispossessed owners. It recommends that the National Assembly should come to the rescue with a definite legislation that will be applicable to the incidence of land holding in the FCT, Abuja and the establishment of a Lands Tribunal system to deal with compensation valuation issues in all the States of the Federation including Abuja.
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William Foote Whyte wrote this Preface for a new edition of my book The Human Perspective in Sociology: The Methodology of Participant Observation that was never published. Whyte died in July 2000, after he had written the Preface, but it was never published. I had signed a contract with a publisher but there were financial problems that led suddenly and unexpectedly to the demise of the company. Bill was concerned about the growing emphasis on computer skills and the quantification of data. He saw the trend challenging the integrity, methodology, and basic purpose of the profession. He called for a new emphasis on qualitative studies and participant observation. In his long career he taught and practiced fieldwork so admirably, so perfectly, that he was a model for other sociologists. Indeed, he was my inspiration.
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