Important Types of Research

If we break down the word research, it is the combination of “Re” and “search”. It means that research intends to find some phenomenon or existing knowledge continuously. The basic aim of research is to confirm the reliability of existing knowledge and contribute new knowledge in the existing knowledge. Research is the solution of any problem and can be classified by method or by purpose. So, it is categorized into four broad categories such as: explanatory research, modeling research, conclusive research and algorithmic research. These all are comprehensively described below:

Exploratory Research


It is a research type which elaborates the relationship between study variables without knowing their end applications. It is clear that general research is conducted without having any specified end purpose except to find out the higher number of possible relations between studied variables. Such researches provide basis for other common findings. These findings are used by researchers for future studies and the findings also help in building foundation for the construction of hypotheses. Major types of exploratory research which set the foundation for other studies are experience survey, literature survey and study of problems. 

a.    Experience Survey

Experience survey is a data base for future studies which is collected on the experience of specialists in a specified field or problem. These studies are based on the experiences and skills of researchers shared by previous studies. The purpose of this research is to build basis for future researches with minimum data collection. Few example of experience survey are given below:

  1. Technology for Casting
  2. Material Planning
  3. Monsoon Prediction
  4. Product Pricing
  5. Investment Decisions
  6. Bidding of Tenders
  7. Portfolio Management

b.    Literature Survey

This is a type of research in which researchers collect the literature in the selected fields to examine and evaluate them for better understanding. It also provides guidance to the researcher about the past studies such as: data sources, past data, results and their interpretation. This research type is also the foundation for further future studies. Some examples of literature survey research are described below:

  1. Demographic Analysis
  2. Wholesale Price Index
  3. SEI Periodic Reports

c.    Study of Insight Stimulating Example

This is a special type of research which has insight into research topics and is mainly focused on case study researches. For example: If any manufacturing concern is implementing JIT (Just in Time) production system, it involves in nurturing of supplier’s firms to ensure reliable supply system of the firm. There are also other factors which affect the success of vendors’ nurturing such as: government policies, culture and loyalty of suppliers.

2.    Conclusive Research

This is a type of research in which hypotheses (originated by exploratory research) of a research are tested. The research draws conclusion on the basis of these hypotheses results. In this research different frameworks can be created such as: decision making framework etc. Conclusive research is further categorized into two types which are: descriptive research and experimental research.

(a)    Descriptive Research

This is a type of conclusive research which is conducted with specific purpose and provides definite conclusions. Descriptive research finds out the relationship between any specified product, sampling units and culture of importance. Taking the example of cell phone, every respondent has different degree of usage on the basis of various factors which are: profession, income level, place and time of use. Here, Researcher wants to see the usage pattern of demographics. 

(b)    Experimental Research

This is a type of conclusive research which is conducted under a controlled environment to analyze the effect of some factors on the studied variables. For-example there are various customers who claim for brand loyalty, therefore, in order to check their loyalty with respective brand, experimental research can be used.  The experimental research could be conducted in this way. Pore same sort and color of juices in different glasses and ask customers to drink the juices and identify the respective brand for proving their loyalty with brand.

3.    Modelling Research

This is a type of research in which situations of real life business problems can be shaped in the form of models. Such type of research is an abstraction of reality. There are numerous kinds of models which can be used for such situations. These models are described below:

(a)    Symbolic Model

This research model identifies the relationship between studied variables. For example: performance of interest with its variables. All the attributes of the system have relationship by an equation. Example of this research model is regression equation.

(b)    Mathematical Model

Modelling research uses the mathematical models which are mainly operation models. These types of models are usually applied in complex real life business problems which arise from management and direction of big systems, business government, machines, money and material in industry. Examples of mathematical models are inventory models, linear programming models, assignment models, replacement models, transportation models, quadratic programming models, parametric programming models etc. Different types of researches can be conducted in this category by using different models separately or combined or developing improved methods for each modeling techniques.

(c)    Simulation Model

This model is an experiment conducted over a real-life stochastic system in scaled time frame to find out average of operational statistics as much as possible. The basic purpose is to form a decision frame work at all levels of management. This model can be continuous or discrete.

4.    Algorithmic Research


This is the type of research which provides well defined sequence of steps to solve the organizational problems; it may be government, business or any industry. These problems can be polynomial or combinatorial. Combinatorial problems are those problems which take the exponential form of volume and time complexity. In polynomial category researchers develop the proper algorithm for optimal solution. Otherwise, the researchers should develop efficient heuristic for the problem.

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