Studies and analyses are vital to progress and innovation and are the only way to empirically verify theories.
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.
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.
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.
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.
innovations-report maintains a wealth of in-depth studies and analyses from a variety of subject areas including business and finance, medicine and ph
Each year brings new research showing that oil and natural gas wells leak significant amounts of the potent greenhouse gas methane.
A new study just published in the journal Environmental Geosciences is the first to offer a profile of which wells are the most likely culprits.21.12.2018 | Read more
When hydropower runs low in a drought, western states tend to ramp up power generation - and emissions - from fossil fuels. According to a new study from Stanford University, droughts caused about 10 percent of the average annual carbon dioxide emissions from power generation in California, Idaho, Oregon and Washington between 2001 and 2015.
"Water is used in electricity generation, both directly for hydropower and indirectly for cooling in thermoelectric power plants," said climate scientist Noah...21.12.2018 | Read more
Fluidity transition in zebrafish embryo necessary for development – Study published in Nature Cell Biology
Zebrafish aren’t just surrounded by liquid, but turn liquid - in part - during their development. As the zebrafish embryo develops from a ball of cells to a...17.12.2018 | Read more
Immunotherapy has proved effective in treating a number of cancers, but brain tumors have remained stubbornly resistant. Now, a new study suggests that a slow-growing brain tumor arising in patients affected by neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) may be vulnerable to immunotherapy, which gives the immune system a boost in fighting cancer.
The findings, made by an international consortium led by researchers at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, were published online...11.12.2018 | Read more
IIASA researchers have contributed to a major new report in The Lancet medical journal looking at the effects of climate change on human health, and the implications for society.
The 2018 Report of the research coalition The Lancet Countdown: Tracking Progress on Health and Climate Change shows that rising temperatures as a result of...30.11.2018 | Read more
Scientists can predict where a rat will go next based on how its hippocampal neurons fire – Study published in Neuron
Place cells in the hippocampus fire when we are in a certain position – this discovery by John O’Keefe, May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser brought them the Nobel...29.11.2018 | Read more
Ant social networks put a brake on disease spread - Study published in Science
When a pathogen enters their colony, ants change their behavior to avoid the outbreak of disease. In this way, they protect the queen, brood and young workers...23.11.2018 | Read more
Popping the top on house paint usually draws people to look inside the can. But Princeton researchers have turned their gaze upward, to the underside of the lid, where it turns out that pattern of droplets could inspire new ways to make microscopically small structures.
The trick comes in controlling the droplets, which form under competing influences like gravity and surface tension. A new study, published Oct. 26 in the...12.11.2018 | Read more
Tracking jaw movements is a useful tool for measuring the efficacy of oral appliances, according to a new study in the journal CHEST®
While continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) continues to be the gold standard for treatment of sleep apnea, the cumbersome machines are often not well...06.11.2018 | Read more
Connectivity in the dentate gyrus supports pattern separation – Study published in Nature Communications
When you park in the office car park, you usually have no problem finding your car again at the end of the day. The next day, you might park a few spots...02.11.2018 | Read more
So-called bifacial stem cells are responsible for one of the most critical growth processes on Earth – the formation of wood.
Immune cells called macrophages are supposed to serve and protect, but cancer has found ways to put them to sleep. Now researchers at the Abramson Cancer...
The scientific and political community alike stress the importance of German Antarctic research
Joint Press Release from the BMBF and AWI
The Antarctic is a frigid continent south of the Antarctic Circle, where researchers are the only inhabitants. Despite the hostile conditions, here the Alfred...
World first experiments on sensor that may revolutionise everything from medical devices to unmanned vehicles
The new sensor - capable of detecting vibrations of living cells - may revolutionise everything from medical devices to unmanned vehicles.
Dead and alive at the same time? Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics have implemented Erwin Schrödinger’s paradoxical gedanken experiment employing an entangled atom-light state.
In 1935 Erwin Schrödinger formulated a thought experiment designed to capture the paradoxical nature of quantum physics. The crucial element of this gedanken...
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23.01.2019 | Life Sciences