Research Proposal

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Explanation of the research proposal

# central research question: Research questions steer the student’s research, and the central research question should reflect the subject of research in a concise way.

# theoretical (desk) research questions:
Questions should reflect relevant theoretical concepts that apply to the topic under research by the student, i.e. from marketing, finance, business environment. The theoretical framework should be taken into account when formulating theoretical research questions. New theories will receive extra points!

Students can improve the structure and categorize the questions under themes (categories), such as: * Strategic management (Competitive Grid, BCG, Ansoff, Abel, 5-forces, competitive strategy, PLC, PEST, SWOT, etc), * Marketing (4Ps, positioning, targeting, branding, CRM, branding, etc). * Operations & SCM (process strategy, SCM, inventory management, lean systems, forecast & demand driven systems, resource planning , and others). * International business (FDI, strategy & organization of int’l business, entry models, barriers to trade, etc). * Finance & accounting.

The choice of topics also depends on how broad or narrow the student wants the research topic to be.

# empirical (field) research questions: Students should think about what they want to find out by doing field research, and formulate research questions about these issues. They will need to identify the populations that they want to research and formulate research questions for each of these populations. One way to structure empirical research questions is using the research populations at categories. What is it you want to learn from these populations? But, formulate research questions, not questionnaire or interview questions!

Research objectives: Objectives should reflect briefly what the student wants to achieve by the research project.

Philosophy:
Interpretivism - the view that all knowledge is a matter of interpretation. From the book: “A People’s History of the United States”, Howard Zinn: “But there is no such thing as a pure fact, innocent of interpretation. Behind every fact presented to the world – by a teacher, a writer, anyone – is a judgment. The judgment that has been made is that this fact is important, and that other facts, omitted, are not important.” * Positivism: 1 + 1 = 2

* Interpretivism: 1 + 1 = 3
# research approach: deductive/inductive:
* Deductive is applying theories in desk research;
* Inductive is developing theories, or new insights, by doing field research. # cross-sectional/longitudinal/exploratory/ descriptive/explanatory studies. * Cross-sectional means studying the here and now.

* Longitudinal means studying developments over time by doing * exploratory, descriptive, and explanatory studies.
Research strategy

# Desk research:
* Theoretical research questions drive desk-research.
* IP-8 is an academic assignment and presenting issues in a theoretical context is a requirement. * IP-8 requires students to apply theories and models to a ‘real life’ business problem and to organize proprietary original field research. * Desk-research

Desk research is done to answer the theoretical research questions and includes selecting and studying the theories and information relevant to the research topic. Students should explain how they will collect quantitative and qualitative data by doing internet, database and literature research. # quantitative secondary data: examples of texts, authors should be given. * # qualitative secondary data: Specific sources should be presented. * # internet research: Specific sources should be presented. Use of school databases is expected. * # literature research: Use of school library sources is expected.

* Theoretical framework

* Area - field – topic: when selecting the theories that apply to the research topic, students will...
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