Research is an enquiry to a problem to understand or provide solution. People experience myriads of problems which must be constantly addressed to provide a conducive environment. Therefore, the role of research cannot be underestimated and there are always departments of research in every organization to help fix the rising contingencies by means of predictions or solution to the immediate problems. At all levels there is need to have timely, good and accurate information for strategic, technical and tactical decision. Researches are classified into applied research and pure research and there are always debate about which plays a major role in life and therefore which should get more budgetary allocations.
An applied research attempts to solve a problem that is already known. In the problem, it tries to answer a specific question. It’s purposely focused to providing solutions to practical problems. For example, the problem of human right violations may exist within the country. To get the solution, one may carry out an applied research to find out what policies or laws should be introduced to contain the problem. This kind of research can be used to provide predictions. For the case of pure research, the researcher does not necessarily answer a particular question or even provide solution to a particular problem. Traditional research probes into known into the unknown areas.
A major objective in science is to provide knowledge of understanding general validity and hence basic research becomes its major dynamic element. Other matters however, such as politics, require necessary decisions and course of action, agreements and collective action. In this case, the need to conduct an in-depth research becomes apparent to get solution of practical social, political and economical problems. Therefore, applied research makes use of advanced scientific understanding and techniques to get solutions rather than accumulate more information on such knowledge and techniques.
The difference can be perceived from the basis of failure or success of the research. As a method of providing solution to the practical solutions, applied research is evaluated by use of practical technical success. Such success is solely dependent on scientific competences of the researcher. Legal firms, government and learning institutions may fund applied legal research to further their respective need for legal, political and social conditions. The success of a basic research is measured by discoveries of new phenomena and new thoughts that it contributes for general interest. Its aim is theoretical information; however, such information increases our aptitude to act proficiently and rationally. When successful, basic research provides precise formulation of the patron’s problem for applied research purposes.
Other differences exist in terms of the context of the research. In case of the applied research, the research questions are provided by the patron for the problem that he requires the solution. In case of basic research the research questions are self-initiated. Applied research deals with broad areas, where control of information is difficult. But for the basic research, focuses on a narrower area. This focus enables to establish causal relationship among variables and the effects that exist. In an applied research, a statistical significant effect may not be enough to contribute to the solution of a problem. In case of applied research, the researcher negotiates with the patron but he has to obtain the grant from the university and government research funding incase of pure research. The researcher has little control of the environment in case of applied research but the control is higher in case of pure research. In terms of methods, applied research uses more than one due to its broad focus. Basic research however, uses a single method because of its narrow scope. Applied research is often characterized by mixed-method techniques than they are for the basic research.
Although the basic and applied research differs in many things they both result to increased knowledge base. They both deal with the definition of problems and problem solving. Applied research provides knowledge on the process of obtaining solution to misery or disasters that man is exposed to whether natural or manmade. The knowledge provided by basic research basically builds upon the existing knowledge that can be put into practice in another day. The similarities between the two types of research sometime make it difficult to differentiate them. A research whose practical application is just a few years away is considered strictly applied, if its application is 20-50 years away, it’s regarded to fall to both basic and applied research. However, if research application is not foreseeable then it regarded to strictly basic.
There also some form of interdependence between the two types of research. Applied research is based on facts and data received in the basic research conducted previously. Lack of facts would make conducting applied research to be practically impossible due to lack of understanding of the problem. Researchers are able to integrate and apply the knowledge obtained from basic research to provide solutions to policy or organizational related problems. Both are concerned by human interactions in political and social context. Considerations, such as values and ethics, must be adhered to in both cases. In terms of the methods employed, both researches use similar designs and collection methods.
Topic such as understanding the legal methods and procedures require a pure research so as to obtain knowledge on sources of law, organization of courts and creation of law. Data may be obtained from secondary sources: any legal document or even through primary means such as interviews. Research on “Ethical and professionalism” topic may be done using the two methods. Basic research may form the initial stage of the research problem to develop an insight into the causal relationship that may exist. In case of unethical situation, applied research may be used to access the facts obtained from the basic research to provide a remedial measure.