Organise and prepare

Thinking before acting is often good advice, especially when you have to do an assignment, and even more when collecting data. 

Search for suitable datasets that you can use and evaluate the dataset on key elements.

Prepare yourself and organise your research results and document where you got hold of the dataset.

Determine the scope

The scope of your research refers to the different dimensions of your research, for example:

  • the populational dimension (people, adults, children, teenagers, migrants)
  • the temporal dimension (recent developments, economic history)
  • the geographical dimension (the Netherlands, the EU, low income countries, etc.)
  • the type of subjects (large firms or small startups?)

Setting the scope determines to an important extent what sources are available. Sometimes your research question specifically points to a certain scope: it is difficult to research the 1997 Asian financial crisis using only EU data from 2010.