Applied Research

In brief

Applied research is done to solve specific questions, and it can be carried out by academic or industrial institutions. Often, an academic institution such as a university has a specific applied research program funded by an industrial partner interested in that program. Then, the primary aim in the activity of a researcher is not to gain knowledge for its own sake. Research is often conducted using the hourglass model, which starts with a broad spectrum for research, then focusing in on the required information through the methodology of the project, and lastly expands the research in the form of discussion and results.
Three fundamental approaches to the problem of the estimation of scientific theory are known: verificationism, falsificationism and Lakatos methodology of research programs. According to the verificationism, the higher the number of experimental facts described by given theory the higher a quality of this theory is. Unfortunately such approach faces the problem of induction and cannot decide the problem. To overcome this difficulty Karl Popper proposed the criterion of falsification to extract scientific theories from other ones. According his point of view, scientific theory must permit its falsification, otherwise it is nonscientific. This methodology gives a quite important role to counterexamples. Unfortunately, real history of science contradicts both theories. Indeed, Imre Lakatos has showed that scientific theories exist for a long time ignoring the clouds of their counterexamples. The unique reason of such long live is only their predictive abilities.


An academic conference is a conference for researchers to present and discuss their work. Together with academic or scientific journals, conferences provide an important channel for exchange of information between researchers. Generally, work is presented in the form of short, concise academic papers and presentations lasting about 10 to 30 minutes. Often there are one or more keynote speakers, presenting a lecture that lasts an hour or so, and which is likely to be advertised before the conference. Prospective presenters are usually asked to submit a short abstract of their presentation, to be reviewed before the presentation is accepted for the meeting. Some disciplines require presenters to submit a paper of about 12-15 pages, which is peer reviewed by members of the program committee or referees chosen by them. In some disciplines such social sciences, it is common for presenters to read from a prepared script. In other disciplines such as the sciences, presenters usually base their talk around a visual presentation that displays key figures and research results. A large meeting is usually called a conference, while a smaller is termed a workshop. A research serminar is a form of academic teaching, at a university or offered by a commercial or professional organization, in small groups where students are requested to actively participate during meetings. This often has to be done by presenting a paper in class and also in written form. Normally, participants must not be beginners. The idea behind seminars is to confront students with the methodology of their chosen subject and also to familiarise them with practical problems that might crop up during their research work. Often a seminar is open to discussion, where questions can be raised and debates conducted.

A research seminar on "DNA Computing" hold by Prof. Y. Watada at
the E.C.E.R.F. of the University of Alberta, Canada, (left to right):
X. Liang, B. Park, W. Pedrycz, R. Weber, Y. Watada M.G.C.A. Cimino, D. Jeng, I. Kim.


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