Research Basics

What do we mean by “research”?

Generally on this site, research refers to a quantitative study that seeks to answer a question or determine if a hypothesis is correct. For example: “How will Maine’s seasonal road restrictions change in the future?”

Exploration into the current knowledge on a subject through a review of existing literature is an important first step. This may help you decide whether or not you want to conduct a quantitative study in the future.

If you are new to conducting a literature review, you will need to develop or enhance your skills. To do so, we recommend:

Effective web searching

Purdue Owl is a strong resource and is also helpful for formatting in-line citations.

Citation and reference tracking tools

The ICNet maintains climate and infrastructure articles and documents using a database of references. There are a number of software program to manage references. For more information, see this comparison. Consider developing and sharing your own database with other ICNet members.