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Reader-Friendly Reports: A No-nonsense Guide to Effective Writing for MBAs, Consultants, and Other Professionals by Carter Daniel

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THE NINE STEPS IN RESEARCH

Research of all kinds consists, inevitably, of these nine steps:

Area

Topic

Tentative source list

Working source list

Notes

Thesis

Skeleton plan

Final plan

Writing

Step 1. Area

The area is the general field you’re scouring around in to find a topic you can research. If you’re interested in corporate social responsibility (CSR), then that’s your area. Likewise, if you’re interested in Adam Smith or Thomas Edison, then those are your areas. The economy of Finland is an area. They’re not the subjects you’re writing about; they’re merely areas in which you’re going to find something to write about.

Step 2. Topic

The topic is the question you decide to find an answer to. “Does a high level of CSR produce high enough stock ...

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