The Nippising University Research Council defined research as any original work and systematic investigation undertaken so as to increase knowledge and understanding as well as establishing facts and principles (pg 7). The work may be inventive or creative. It means search of knowledge again hence the word “re-search”. It is a studious inquiry, academic or scholarly; a thorough investigation that is done critically and by means of experiments and its basic purpose is to reverse some accepted conclusions by introducing some new facts (Guyette 1983).
Perfect on the other hand denotes a state that is completely refined work that is without faults. The work presented must be without any errors or any weaknesses whatsoever. I agree with the statement that there is no hope of doing perfect research (Griffiths 1998 pg 97). Entirely presuming that research is completely perfect is a wrong notion. First, research is a constant process concerning a long voyage of discovering new facts in any related field of knowledge and putting the knowledge into books. In fact, some people have viewed research as a movement in which a person moves from the unknown to the known.
Research also gives answers to the inquisitiveness of man. It is the nature of man to probe into facts with a bid to attain a fuller understanding of what is unknown to them. After searching, they search again and again to find out more truth that is still concealed and that which has not yet been discovered. Thus if research were to be perfect, then there would no more need of any further research on already researched topics and other fields of knowledge. It means that there would be no doors open for fresh research and new studies would not be available. Then new writings would be but a waste of time.
One researcher may have his or her particular findings and conclusions on a particular topic. A latter researcher on the same topic after further research may come up with totally conflicting views (Powell 1991). For instance, researchers in science have found out that a high percentage of fats in the body entirely affect the body in a negative way. Precisely, that excess fats produce proteins with inflammatory hormone like substances which cause the development of chronic diseases such as obesity, heart problems and diabetes (Powell 1991).
Moreover, research by another group of researchers has concluded that the fats have some positive effects on the body. They assert that the body needs a certain percentage of the fats to act as insulators shielding most of the body tissues from shock. The fats act as shock absorbers. Consequently, considerable amounts of fats are needed in the body for warmth that is provided by the adipose tissue made up of fats. These are thus contrasting findings in research.
Another example of research that has had conflicting views over the years for instance is the debate regarding the age of the earth. Archbishop Usher in 1654 claimed that the earth was created on 26th October 4004 basing his arguments on the bible genealogy. Some years later in the 18th and 19th Centuries, Abraham Gottlod, a German mineralogist argued that the earth is formed through catastrophic fashions that bring change to the earth’s landforms (Dalrymple 1991). He had no precise time when the earth was formed.
Seemingly, both Bernard Palissy and James Houghton, who were scientists, asserted that the earth was more than 6000 years old as per the 18th century, theories that literally opposed the previous views. In 1897, Lord Kelvin calculated the earth to be 24-40 million years. His findings were based on the law of dynamics. In 1899, John Joly, came up with other findings that the age of the earth was ultimately 90-100 million years. Most of the estimations regarding the age of the earth are found in the evidence formulated from studying the rocks and thus the findings will always differ (McDougall 1997). The scientists in most situations then differ in their findings.
Conclusively, research is a process that will never end. There is no perfect research that will bring the process to an end. It goes on and on and keeps on evolving as it adds new concepts and findings to older ones. Past facts and findings are reversed by the new ones. When new facts arise, the older ones are modified or otherwise challenged. Thus, no one research could be collectively termed as “perfect”.
Dalrymple, G B. The Age of the Earth. Stanford, Calif: Stanford University Press, 1991. Print.
McDougall, Walter A. The Heavens and the Earth: A Political History of the Space Age. Baltimore, Md: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997. Print.
Powell, John J. The Effects of Different Percentages of Dietary Fat Intake, Exercise, and Calorie Restriction on Weight and Body Composition in Obese Females. , 1991. Print.