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Research Proposal: Designing a Research Methodology for a Business Issue

Task Description

Task Description 

Select a research topic of your choice based on a business issue and design a research proposal for this topic. The topic should be agreed with your Lecturer at least 4 weeks before submission date. This proposal should not exceed 3000 words. (+/- 10%) 
Based on the selected topic, you are required to:
Develop a research question and an appropriate set of research objectives
Justify the choice of research topic including the background and context of the research
Develop a critical literature review of the research topic
Design a research methodology based on the topic selected. This would require you to develop a research design and justify your choice as appropriate.

Your research design should include the following:

Discuss and justify the data collection methods – type of data, sampling method and target group
Discuss the data analysis procedure to be adopted
Discuss the possible ethical issues that need to be considered in this research 
Discuss the methods by which you would ensure that the research was both valid and reliable
Discuss any possible limitations to this research
Provide a research plan (timescale)
Support with relevant references (Harvard format)

In your data collection and data analysis section, if appropriate, discuss how you would collect primary data through the use of one or a combination of methods of data collection methods e.g. questionnaire, interview, focus groups, observation, etc., and how you would analyse this data. 

The above requirements are indicated as the required areas of focus for you to articulate your individual responses. The submission of your work for assessment should be organised and clearly structured in the order outlined below.

Formatting  And Layout
Please note the following when completing your written assignment:
Writing: Written in English in an appropriate business/academic style
Focus: Focus only on the tasks set in the assignment.
Document format: Report
Ensure a clear title, course, and name or ID number is on a cover sheet and the referencing conforms to the Harvard system.
Research: Research should use reliable and relevant sources of information e.g. academic books and journals that have been peer reviewed. The research should be extensive. 

The use of a range of information sources is expected – academic books, peer reviewed journal articles, professional articles, press releases and newspaper articles, reliable statistics, company annual reports and other company information. All referencing should be in Harvard style.

The instructions below will provide you with some more, hopefully helpful, advice

Research Proposal Title: The title is to create interest and reflect seriousness and relevance. Avoid vague and sweeping phrases covering broad areas of subjects. Endeavour to be clear, specific and precise. Remember that a title, brief as it may be, needs to be faithful to the contents of the research. 

Your research design should include the following:

Abstract: This is a brief statement of what you are intending to research. It should be no more than 1-2 paragraphs. This needs to describe the proposal content. Think of this as an executive summary. 

Introduction: You need to define the problem. Evidence of analytical thinking, argument analysis, theory application, and data management analysis is required as part of research. Remember to emphasis: 

Relevance of the Proposed Research to Business Research 
Place the proposed study in context 
Justification of the chosen topic 
Value of this research 

Research question and objectives: This is to form the heart of the research proposal, creating interest and raising queries while serving to discipline and monitor thinking. Good research questions should be clear, specific, and answerable. The research objectives will comprise a general statement on the purpose, intention,

or desire outcome of your research project. Please remember: 

There must be 1 research question (exceptionally up to 3) and an appropriate set of objectives 
The research questions and objectives are linked to your Literature review. 

Literature review: This is designed to situate your research project in a scholarly tradition, acknowledging the contributions made by other scholars and/or practitioners while highlighting the innovative approach of your project, which is expected to shed a new light on the subject or fill a gap in the available literature on it. A critical survey (or critique) of the literature in the research area will also help you define or single out a major work, theory or school of thought you could use or build. (A conceptual or theoretical framework) 

Research method(s) used: This is to inform the reader how you intend to proceed regarding data (based on what you need, where the data are located, how to get them, what to do with them). The two main methodologies in this connection are Qualitative and Quantitative. 

Your method consists of two parts:
1.Research design – relates to the “research onion” (philosophies, approaches, strategies, choices, time horizon). You are expected to make strong justifications in support of your chosen research design. The “Onion” framework, designed by Saunders at al (2015) will be introduced during the course lectures.

2.Data collection and analysis – relates to the last phase of the research (techniques and procedures). Identify how specifically the data will be collected (i.e. questionnaire, focus group, etc...). You are expected to provide the advantages and disadvantages of the various data collection methods and select the most appropriate data collection method(s). For data analysis, you need to discuss whether or not you will use descriptive or inferential statistics….or both. Also you need to consider which software might be used for the analysis.

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