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I'm doing 'longitudinal' qualitative research, and to avoid continually being accused of assuming that I will find change, I need a term that covers both change and stasis - so I can say that I'm looking for instances of [change-or-stasis] in particular areas of experience over a particular period of time. One researcher gets round this by saying that stasis is a type of change, but I'm not sure that works. Any thoughts gratefully received!

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  • Please explain how something that does not change and something that does can have a single referent?
    – Lambie
    Commented Aug 23, 2023 at 16:30
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    If suppose you could consider "stasis is a type of change" as a corner case of zero change. But this paper is titled "Statis and Change." Can you not make it clear at the start what is being studied? You've said "to avoid continually being accused of assuming that I will find change." So phrase your work in such a way that it isn't presumptive. Commented Aug 23, 2023 at 16:50
  • Synonym stability. Commented Aug 23, 2023 at 16:57
  • .... behaviour? Commented Aug 23, 2023 at 18:09
  • status over time is the idiomatic way of expressing the idea in a succinct phrase. You sure you don't want to add the phrase request tag? Analysis of that status will show either continuity or discontinuity. But there's no commonly used or even rarely used word that encompasses both.. It's like looking for a neutral and unbiased word that can be a rubric for both "rough" and "smooth", "hardness" and "softness". You've gotta pick. It's called the Rockwell Hardness measure, for example. So you can measure continuity and cite exceptions of discontinuity, or you can do the reverse.
    – TimR
    Commented Aug 23, 2023 at 19:16

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I don't know much about what exactly you are researching, but perhaps you could refer to the "continuity status" of each instance under review.

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Whether a situation changes or is at a standstill it is considered that all possibilities are part of its evolution. The word "evolution" is then a likely candidate, although, possibly not the only one.

(SOED) 4 b Any process of gradual change occurring in something, esp. from a simpler to a more complicated or advanced state; the passage of something through a succession of stages.

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