Day-to-day operations

Teams or individuals seeking support will first make an appointment.

  • Each session lasts 1.5 hrs
  • The meetings can be run online or in person, according to the researchers’ preferences

First Encounter

The Research Question

  • The team will focus on understanding the real interests of the researcher(s) and help towards developing a good research question.
    • Many will have only a general idea about what they want to study at that moment. Others will bring a research project in hand.
    • Either way, the team will go through these questions in detail, aiming at helping the researcher to end up with one or more clear, focused, well structured, relevant, ethical, and feasible research questions that should still be interesting and motivating to them.
  • It may take one or more encounters to achieve a proper research question.

Subsequent Encounters

Research Methodology

Once the research question is established (and a testable hypothesis is clearly formulated in case of analytical studies), proceed to review in detail, together with the researcher(s), the methods required to answer the question.

Focus on the general study design, including:

  • a clear delimitation of the target population
  • sampling techniques and sample size
  • recruitment, randomisation (when appropriate)
  • interventions, comparisons
  • outcomes and their timeframes
  • variables in study
  • measurement tools
  • statistical methods
  • data analysis
  • ethical requirements

Final Encounters


Finally, address the operational aspects of the project:

  • project submission to institutional review boards;
  • protocol registering and availability through public repositories;
  • technical expertise requirements;
  • access to specific resources needed (equipment, tools, materials, etc.);
  • standardised procedures to data collection and monitoring;
  • research budget and funding sources; and
  • realistic timelines for conducting all the research processes.

Going through all thesteps may take several encounters, depending on the previous expertise of the researcher(s).

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