Harvey Brooks (1968, p. 46) has suggested a general set of dimensions and categories of research:

  • The degree to which the research is fundamental or applied—for example, basic research versus applied research and development. The term "fundamental" refers to an intellectual structure, a hierarchy of generality, while the term "applied" refers to a practical objective. It is true that fundamental research is generally less closely related to practical application, but not inevitably so.

  • The scientific discipline—for example, physics, chemistry, or biology

  • The function of the research, or its primary focus—for example, defense, health, or environment

  • The institutional character of research—for example, academic (university), ...

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