Good research design
The following points should be considered when designing research projects:
- The proposed research should address pertinent questions and be designed either to add to existing knowledge about the subject or to develop methods for research into it.
- The design of the study should be appropriate for the question(s) being asked and address the most important potential sources of bias including any conflicts of interest.
- The design and conduct of the study, including how data will be gathered, analysed and managed and may eventually be made available to others, should be set out in detail in a pre-specified research plan or protocol.
- All necessary skills and experience should be available to carry out the proposed research in the proposed research team or through collaboration with specialists in relevant fields, where this applies.
- Sufficient resources should be available to carry out the proposed research and these resources should meet all relevant standards.
- An assessment should be carried out in advance to consider ethical issues, any relevant legal requirements and any other risks to the organisation, to the research or to the health, safety and well-being of researchers and research participants during the research, particularly in the case of lone researchers working away from City, or to others arising from its potential findings. The dignity, rights, safety and well-being of any participants must be a primary consideration in any research study.
- Any issues relating to the above points should be resolved as far as possible prior to the start of the research, including taking advice on any risks or conflicts of interest identified. It is an institutional requirement that ethical approval must be received in advance of any research commencing.
- Researchers should be prepared to make research designs available to peer reviewers and journal editors when submitting research reports for publication.