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Scientific research using studies and analyses

Studies and analyses are vital to progress and innovation and are the only way to empirically verify theories.

Science and empirical studies and analyses

Not all fields of science are dependent on empirical studies and analyses to verify a thesis. Mathematics, theology, philosophy and law are examples of fields that revolve within a stand-alone world in which new findings are derived by means of logical operations consisting of axioms, postulates or articles of faith (theology) that need not be proven true or accurate through empirical studies or analyses. Although these subjects are indispensable when it comes to basic research, by themselves they don't yield technical advances.

Empirical scientific approaches are diametrically opposed to these fields however. In this case, new theories are developed based on thought processes, observations and speculation. Ensuring that this knowledge has actual scientific relevance requires that it undergo an empirical evaluation however. Researchers rely on studies and analyses to compare these theses with real observations. New scientific knowledge is considered valid only after empirical studies and analyses show that theory and reality coincide. In the process it is imperative that the studies and analyses always produce the same result under the same experiment structure. Only then it is empirically proven that the result actually behaves in line with the theory.

Using empirical studies and analyses beyond the natural sciences and engineering

The validation process for new findings based on studies and analyses as described above is in no way limited to natural and engineering sciences such as physics, biology, chemistry, medicine and health, machine engineering or aero and space engineering. In fields such as the social sciences, studies and analyses are also indispensable for empirically proving the accuracy of assumptions and conclusions. Sociology uses empirical-based statistics, studies and analyses to determine if statements about the migration behavior of specific population groups is accurate for instance. The field of psychology also relies on analyses and studies to empirically validate the assumptions of certain behavior patterns.

Progress and innovation through empirical studies and analyses

Before the Enlightenment changed our way of thinking, universities tended to postulate and speculate more than perform scientific research. Innovations therefore were apt be accidental. Once researchers were convinced that scientific results were only possible through the use of empirical studies and analysis, the groundwork was laid for the rapid advances in science that followed. Empirical studies and analyses range from simple experiments, particularly by measuring, weighing and counting, to extremely complex processes that require an enormous amount of time and money. Determining the validity of scientific theories using empirical assurances is one of the prerequisites for implementing these theories in practice. When a specific fact has been confirmed and documented based on studies and analyses, the assumption is that it will remain a fact in the future under the same premises. Only then does it make sense to develop new technologies based on this knowledge, because this provides sufficient proof of the assumption that they always function in the same manner.

Two historical examples of progress based on studies and analyses

Gregor Mendel's studies and analyses on genetics provided empirical proof of his theories of heredity, which then led to modern plant breeding and the establishment of food security for millions of people. The effectiveness of penicillin, another invaluable innovation for mankind, was empirically proven by Alexander Fleming through medical studies and analyses.

Studies and Analyses

innovations-report maintains a wealth of in-depth studies and analyses from a variety of subject areas including business and finance, medicine and ph

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Do microplastics harbour additional risks by colonization with harmful bacteria?

The alarming omnipresence of microplastics in rivers, lakes, and oceans increasingly gains the critical focus of research. So far, however, there has been no reliable knowledge as to whether microplastic particles in aquatic ecosystems promote the development of special bacterial communities or even the spread of pathogens. A recent study within the project MikrOMIK* headed by the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (IOW) has now for the first time systematically investigated whether bacterial biofilms on microplastic particles differ from those on natural materials and how various environmental factors such as salinity or nutrients influence the community composition.

Today, microplastics – plastic particles smaller than 5 millimetres – can be detected everywhere in the environment. Many hundreds of thousands particles per...

05.04.2018 | nachricht Read more

Rutgers-led innovation could spur faster, cheaper, nano-based manufacturing

Scalable and cost-effective manufacturing of thin film devices

Engineers at Rutgers University-New Brunswick and Oregon State University are developing a new method of processing nanomaterials that could lead to faster and...

14.02.2018 | nachricht Read more

New study from the University of Halle: How climate change alters plant growth

Global warming affects more than just plant biodiversity - it even alters the way plants grow. A team of researchers at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) joined forces with the Leibniz Institute for Plant Biochemistry (IPB) to discover which molecular processes are involved in plant growth. In the current edition of the internationally renowned journal "Current Biology", the group presents its latest findings on the mechanism controlling growth at high temperatures. In the future this could help breed plants that are adapted to global warming.

Plants react much more sensitively to fluctuations in temperature than animals. They are also unable to seek out warmer or cooler locations. "When temperatures...

12.01.2018 | nachricht Read more

Disarray in the brain

Neuroscientists from Lübeck investigate spontaneous neural activity

Our brain never rests completely: Even in situations without noticeable external input thousands of neurons are firing in different parts of the brain, a...

18.12.2017 | nachricht Read more

Amputees can learn to control a robotic arm with their minds

A new study by neuroscientists at the University of Chicago shows how amputees can learn to control a robotic arm through electrodes implanted in the brain

A new study by neuroscientists at the University of Chicago shows how amputees can learn to control a robotic arm through electrodes implanted in the brain.

28.11.2017 | nachricht Read more

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

Forests fulfil numerous important functions, and do so particularly well if they are rich in different species of trees. This is the result of a new study. In addition, forest managers do not have to decide on the provision of solely one service – such as wood production or nature conservation – as a second study demonstrates: several services provided by forest ecosystems can be improved at the same time. Both studies were led by scientists from Leipzig University and the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), and published in the prestigious journal Ecology Letters.

Forests are of great importance to humans: the wood grown in forests is used in our houses for furniture, roof timbers and flooring; forests store carbon from...

17.11.2017 | nachricht Read more

Win-win strategies for climate and food security

Efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the agriculture and forestry sectors could lead to increased food prices—but new research identifies strategies that could help mitigate climate change while avoiding steep hikes in food prices.

Climate policies that target agriculture and forests could lead to increased food prices, but reducing deforestation and increasing soil carbon sequestration...

02.10.2017 | nachricht Read more

The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data

The sharing of research data presents a social dilemma. Although the sharing of research data offers great potential for scientific progress, researchers rarely practise it. A study of the ZBW – Leibniz Information Centre for Economics in cooperation with the Leibniz Research Alliance Science 2.0 looks at the role played by the personality of researchers within this social dilemma and which individual barriers and incentives should be taken into account.

The personality of a researcher can play an important part in his or her decision to share research data. This is the result of a national, interdisciplinary...

06.09.2017 | nachricht Read more

Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises

Europe is demographically divided. In the north, west and centre of the continent, comparatively high fertility rates and immigration are ensuring population growth for the foreseeable future. By contrast, many regions in southern and Eastern Europe are threatened with accelerated aging processes and marked population losses.

Europe is not just the proverbial “old” continent. Its populations are also on average older than elsewhere in the world. Even now, there are only some three...

10.08.2017 | nachricht Read more

Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D

A pioneering new study is set to help surgeons repair hearts without damaging precious tissue

A pioneering new study is set to help surgeons repair hearts without damaging precious tissue.

07.08.2017 | nachricht Read more
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Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Writing and deleting magnets with lasers

Study published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces is the outcome of an international effort that included teams from Dresden and Berlin in Germany, and the US.

Scientists at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) together with colleagues from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and the University of Virginia...

Im Focus: Gamma-ray flashes from plasma filaments

Novel highly efficient and brilliant gamma-ray source: Based on model calculations, physicists of the Max PIanck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg propose a novel method for an efficient high-brilliance gamma-ray source. A giant collimated gamma-ray pulse is generated from the interaction of a dense ultra-relativistic electron beam with a thin solid conductor. Energetic gamma-rays are copiously produced as the electron beam splits into filaments while propagating across the conductor. The resulting gamma-ray energy and flux enable novel experiments in nuclear and fundamental physics.

The typical wavelength of light interacting with an object of the microcosm scales with the size of this object. For atoms, this ranges from visible light to...

Im Focus: Basel researchers succeed in cultivating cartilage from stem cells

Stable joint cartilage can be produced from adult stem cells originating from bone marrow. This is made possible by inducing specific molecular processes occurring during embryonic cartilage formation, as researchers from the University and University Hospital of Basel report in the scientific journal PNAS.

Certain mesenchymal stem/stromal cells from the bone marrow of adults are considered extremely promising for skeletal tissue regeneration. These adult stem...

Im Focus: Like a wedge in a hinge

Researchers lay groundwork to tailor drugs for new targets in cancer therapy

In the fight against cancer, scientists are developing new drugs to hit tumor cells at so far unused weak points. Such a “sore spot” is the protein complex...

Im Focus: The Future of Ultrafast Solid-State Physics

In an article that appears in the journal “Review of Modern Physics”, researchers at the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (LAP) assess the current state of the field of ultrafast physics and consider its implications for future technologies.

Physicists can now control light in both time and space with hitherto unimagined precision. This is particularly true for the ability to generate ultrashort...

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