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The Research Design Canvas: A Tool for Creating Better Studies

Standing on the Shoulders of Giants

ISBN: 978-1-78756-336-0, eISBN: 978-1-78756-335-3

Publication date: 10 April 2019


Designing a top-quality research study is a complex challenge. We introduce the research design canvas as a tool to help researchers manage this complexity and create better studies. Completing a research design canvas requires researchers to a priori articulate one or more research questions, identify a gap in the literature in need of closing, select a guiding theory or theories, construct hypotheses, choose a sample, select measures, recognize boundary conditions, plot a data analysis strategy, ascertain a study’s limitations, clarify the value added of key research partners, pinpoint a target journal for potential publication, and think ahead about their backup plans in case the research process goes awry. Many studies are doomed to bad fates by poor decisions about these elements. Using the research design canvas can help researchers ensure that they have selected a valid approach to each element, reason through the interrelationships among each decision point within the canvas to ensure that there is consistency among them, and critically assess whether the design as a whole provides the basis for a new advance. By doing so, scholars may be able to improve their chances of defying the high rejection rates of leading journals.



Ketchen, D.J., Bergh, D.D. and Boyd, B.K. (2019), "The Research Design Canvas: A Tool for Creating Better Studies", Standing on the Shoulders of Giants (Research Methodology in Strategy and Management, Vol. 11), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 63-76.



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