Why the Research Question?

Usually question is asked because there are problems, or because we are facing a problem or problems. Frequently those problems are emerged from prreliminary observation. For example, we might observe persistent decline in profit consecutively for several years. Then we might ask question such as “is this decline in profit because of a decline in sales? Or may be because of other factors?”. To answer this question of course we need research. Then the reason for asking the research question is often called “broad area problem”, and solving broad area problem is the purpose of any research. Hence it is clear that the broad area problem can only be solved by answering the question, i.e., by knowing the cause of the problem through research. Having known the cause of the problem, solution can be devised and this is called the implication of the research or policy implication .

Example 2: Broad area problem of the research questions in Example 1

  • The broad area problem for research question #1 is that we do not know whether KMS will contribute to competitiveness of the company and since substantial amount of resources has been allocated for the KMS, including yearly budget for the past five years, we need to make sure that the KMS surely contributes to competitiveness of the company. Otherwise, we will be wasting resources, and waste should be eliminated in any business.
  • The broad area problem would be whether this general proposition is true or not. In other word, this is a type of problem to proof a general theory