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Exploratory Research

What is Exploratory Research?

Exploratory research is a preliminary research method that aims to gain a deeper understanding of a topic or phenomenon. It typically involves qualitative research techniques such as interviews, focus groups, observations, and literature reviews to explore and gather information about a research area with limited existing knowledge or prior assumptions.

Why is Exploratory Research important?

Exploratory research is used to generate insights, uncover patterns, identify research questions, and provide a foundation for more structured research. It is often the initial step in the research process and helps researchers to formulate hypotheses or research objectives for further investigation in subsequent research phases.

How to use Exploratory Research?

Key characteristics of exploratory research include:

Broad and Open-Ended: Exploratory research begins with a broad scope and open-ended questions, allowing researchers to explore different facets of the topic without predetermined hypotheses or constraints.

Qualitative Methods: It often involves qualitative research methods such as interviews, focus groups, observations, or case studies. These methods allow for in-depth exploration, capturing rich and nuanced data.

Small Sample Size: Exploratory research typically involves a small sample size to enable in-depth exploration of individual cases or participants. The emphasis is on quality rather than quantity of data.

Flexible and Iterative: The research design is flexible and adaptable, allowing researchers to adjust the approach and focus based on emerging insights. It often involves an iterative process, refining research questions and methods as new knowledge is gained.

Data-Driven Analysis: Exploratory research relies on inductive reasoning, analyzing data collected to identify patterns, themes, and relationships. It aims to generate new ideas and theories from the ground up, rather than testing pre-existing hypotheses.

Hypothesis Generation: Through the exploration process, exploratory research helps generate hypotheses or research questions for further investigation using more structured research methods.

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About Akendi

Akendi is a human experience design firm, leveraging equal parts experience research and creative design excellence. We provide strategic insights and analysis about customer and user behaviour and combine this knowledge with inspired design. The results enable organizations to improve effectiveness, engage users and provide remarkable customer experiences to their audiences.