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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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Visual attention attuned to grabbable objects

Dartmouth research group has found a new and unexpected way our attention can be grabbed – by grabbable objects. Their study, which appears in the March 17 advance online issue of Nature Neuroscience, demonstrates that objects we typically associate with grasping, such as screwdrivers, forks or pens, automatically attract our visual attention, especially if these items are on a person’s right-hand side. In the brain, there are two primary visual pathways, one for identifying objects (p 17.03.2003 | nachricht Read more

Mayo Clinic Proceedings study finds little variance in survival

A long-term study of patients in Rochester, Minn., with the eating disorder anorexia nervosa found that their survival rates did not differ from the expected survival rates of others of the same age and sex. The results, published in the March issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, add to the knowledge of anorexia nervosa and point to other areas that need greater study from researchers. "Although our data suggest that overall mortality is not increased among community patients 11.03.2003 | nachricht Read more

Environmental influences play significant role on experiments

It is natural to suppose that conducting the same tests, with the same strain of mice and the same protocols on identical equipment but in different labs will ensure similar results. A University of Alberta researcher and his team have found that assumption not to be true--fuelling the nature vs. nurture debate and shedding some light on the importance of environmental factors in experiments. Dr. Douglas Wahlsten, from the Department of Psychology, is part of a research team that use mice w 27.02.2003 | nachricht Read more

IU research examines gender differences in excuses for failure

When men make lame excuses for a poor test performance, women don’t buy it, according to research just published by Edward Hirt, a social psychologist at Indiana University Bloomington. Hirt has spent the last 10 years conducting research on this aspect of social psychology that involves the term self-handicapping. The associate professor of psychology is the lead author of "I Know You Self-Handicapped Last Exam: Gender Differences in Reactions to Self-Handicapping" in the current issue of 07.02.2003 | nachricht Read more

Alzheimer patients who scored well on memory tests – show unique compensatory brain activity

Study is first link ’compensatory prefrontal network’ to better performance on memory tests A group of Canadian researchers has found the most direct evidence to date that people with early-stage Alzheimer Disease can engage additional areas in the brain to perform successfully on memory tests. Led by Dr. Cheryl Grady, a senior scientist with The Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care, the study is published in the February 1, 2003 issue of 05.02.2003 | nachricht Read more

Removing Portion of Spleen Effective in Treating Inherited Childhood Anemias

Researchers from Duke University Medical Center and the Medical College of Wisconsin have shown that removing a portion, instead of all, of the spleen, can successfully treat children with a variety of congenital anemias while preserving important splenic immune function. In the largest study of its kind in the U.S., the researchers performed the surgery, known as a partial splenectomy, on 25 children with congenital forms of anemia caused by abnormal red blood cells. Typically, these 31.01.2003 | nachricht Read more

Tufts University research shows TV carries messages that influence infants’ behavior

Expert in ‘emotional communication’ says 1-year-olds can pick up ‘emotional signals’ and base decisions on them What do infants learn as they watch people talk or act in a certain manner? If a television is on in a room, how much do infants pay attention to it? These are questions Donna Mumme, assistant professor of psychology at Tufts University, answers in her study, "The Infant as Onlooker: Learning from Emotional Reactions Observed in a Television Scenario." Co-authored 21.01.2003 | nachricht Read more

Influences on quality of life in early old age

A golden early old age is within sight for many people, says new research funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, which demonstrates that the good life is much less influenced by your past – the job your father had, for instance – than by the present, when two of the most important influences are having choices about working or not working, and having friends in whom you can confide. "Good quality of life in early old age is a realistic ambition for all", says the research team, 17.01.2003 | nachricht Read more

Scientists identify brain regions where nicotine affects attention, other cognitive skills

Nicotine administration in humans is known to sharpen attention and to slightly enhance memory. Now scientists, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), have identified those areas of the brain where nicotine exerts its effects on cognitive skills. Their findings suggest that nicotine improves attention in smokers by enhancing activation in the posterior cortical and subcortical regions of the brain--areas traditionally associated with visual attention, arousal, and motor a 14.01.2003 | nachricht Read more

Rotation oscillation toothbrushes proven more effective than ’sonic’ technology

Nearly four decades of research conclude that power toothbrushes with rotation oscillation action, such as the Oral-B 3D Excel, are demonstrably more effective in removing plaque and reducing gingivitis than other types of power toothbrushes -- including those featuring "sonic" technology -- according to an international study announced today at the Forsyth Institute conference on evidence-based dentistry. Half of adults age 18 or older have some evidence of gingivitis, the earliest 13.01.2003 | nachricht Read more
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