Invitation to Research – The Syllabus
This seminar is conceived as an induction for new doctoral candidates. It is
designed to be conducted in about 25 hours of class-contact, preferably over
a concentrated period of 1-2 weeks, and preferably as soon after initial enrolment
The seminar expressly does not drill deeply into any particular discipline,
domain, tradition or technique. Rather, it is intended to establish the foundation
that all doctoral candidates need at the start of their journey.
The Seminar's objectives are:
- to provide candidates with:
- meta-theory and theory relating to the process of research;
- an overview of the range of techniques employed in academic research;
- practical guidance in relation to research process and product;
- to establish a common intellectual platform on which individual candidates,
Professors and Institutes can later overlay much more detailed and specific
knowledge, appropriate to their particular focus.
- Bring with you (and, if necessary, prepare!) an outline of your research
topic (nomatter how brief). Include a statement of the research tradition
and discipline(s) within which you are conducting your work.
- Bring with you the titles of at least three doctoral theses that
you have some familiarity with, that have some relevance to your own research
project, and that are very different from one another.
- Bring with you copies of at least three refereed papers that you
have some familiarity with, that have some relevance to your own research
project, and that are very different from one another.
Note that the times that have been allocated are indicative only.
- Introduction (1 hour)
- Objectives, Philosophy, Syllabus, Timetable
- British, American and German Conceptions of the PhD
- Key Insights from the Philosophy of Science (7 hours,
incl. mixed-group discussion), including:
- Aspects of Epistemology and Ontology
- Data, Information, Knowledge, Wisdom
- Theory, Scientific Theory, Paradigms
- Systems and Models
- The Nature and Process of Science
- Alternative Research Approaches and Traditions
- Research Concepts and Terminology
- Research Techniques associated with those alternative
traditions (8 hours, incl. discipline-group discussion), including:
- Non-Empirical Techniques
- Scientific Techniques
- Interpretivist Techniques
- Techniques at the Boundary of Science and Interpretivism
- Engineering Techniques
- The Research Process (3 hours), with particular reference
- The 3-year Model: Divergence, Convergence, 'Hard Slog'
- The Foundations: Literature Review
- Gap Analysis: Additional Studies Required
- The Formulation of Research Questions
- The Proposal, and perhaps Preliminary Defence
- The Construction of a Research Method in order to answer the Research
Questions (incl. mixed-group discussion)
- The Discipline and Skill of Academic Writing
- The Management of Research
- The Ethics of Research
- Case Study: Challenges in Research into eBusiness (1 hour,
incl. mixed-group discussion)
- The Research Product (2 hours, incl. discipline-group
- Guidelines for Proposals
- Guidelines for Dissertations
- Examples of Dissertations
- Conference Papers and Journal Articles (incl. discipline-group discussion)
- Recapitulation (1 hour)
The seminar being conducted at the European Business School during the Winter
Semester 2002-03 is scheduled as follows:
- Do. 16. Jan 03 16:00-19:00 (3 St.), anschliessend Weinkellerabend
- Fr. 17. Jan 03 09:00-18:00 (6 St.)
- Sa. 18. Jan 03 10:00-17:00 (5 St.)
- So. 19. Jan 03 10:00-17:00 (5 St.)
- Mo. 20. Jan 03 09:00-18:00 (6 St.)
The language of instruction is English. Der Professor kann sich aber einigermassen
auf Deutsch verständlich machen.
- Briefly describe the topic that you are intending to address, or a topic
that you are considering that you might address, in your doctoral dissertation.
- Discuss your topic, applying the concepts presented during the segment
'Key Insights from the Philosophy of Science'.
- Discuss the relevance to your topic of each of the Research Techniques
presented in this seminar-series.
It is intended that the Seminar be assessed on the following basis:
- preparation, in particular through the pre-Seminar assignment;
- participation in the seminars and discussion-sessions;
- contributions to the School's emergent web-resources for doctoral candidates;
- assimilation and application of the material provided, in particular through
the post-Seminar assignment.
A small collection of web-accessible is provided here,
selected so as to directly support the presentations.
A more substantial set of references is provided here.
These are scheduled to be complete by the beginning of December 2002.
- Key Insights from the Philosophy of Science
- Research Techniques
- The Research Process
- Case Study: Challenges in Research into eBusiness
- The Research Product
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Created: 13 October 2002 -
Last Amended: 1 December 2002
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