Rather little of scientific reasoning involves deduction; induction, retroduction
(inferring the presence of possible causal mechanisms), and argument by analogy are more common (Bhaskar  1979; Taylor  1973).
Since this research work does not seek to prove, disprove or compare phenomena but rather to discover the underlying structures of a nascent domain of knowledge, this study adopted a mixed research perspective combining behavioral and design research patterns, an interpretive and critical paradigm, a mixture of research strategies focusing on retroduction
, and an exploratory mixed data collection methodology.
Peirce, Hartshorne, and Weiss (1935) synonymously referred to abductive reasoning as retroduction
and hypothesis and explained it as a necessary process of the scientific understanding of a phenomenon.
The research relies on use of retroduction
rather than applying inductive or deductive approaches.
suggesting that minor changes in natural conditions may render induction and retroduction
based research techniques inaccurate).
6) See the introduction to Parables for the Virtual for a discussion of the role of retroduction
as that which emerges from a feeding back and produces as it does so (Massumi, 2002).
as mixed-methods triangulation in economics into social science.
It also outlines McMullin's theory of retroduction
and his account of scientific realism, both of which are philosophical positions that provide additional support for consonance from an epistemological perspective.
Three scientific methods--deduction, retroduction
, and hypothetico-deduction (H-D)--are commonly used in research involving S/V reasoning, providing easy-to-understand examples for helping students learn the methods.
The most powerful exposition of the necessity of retroductive view for the latter emerged recently by two direct students of Laclau for whom "explanation in social science is closely tied to the context of discovery, thereby making retroduction
central to it" (Glynos and Howarth 2007: 47).
Because of this strange loop, reminiscent of the future anterior tense involved in an understanding of that which will have been the case, abduction is also sometimes referred to as retroduction
, or backward inference.
Montreal) argues that McMullin's theory of retroduction
offers an account of critical realism in scientific rationality that has more fully developed epistemological and metaphysical elements than is developed by the big guns in the field: Ian Barbour, Arthur Peacocke, and John Polinghorne.