Essay on research
There is no hope of doing perfect research
Research is the key to human civilization and evolution. Innovations in the world of science and technology and in anthropology are all attributed to consistent studies conducted in the respective fields. The progress experienced because of research has gradually changed the lives of people for the better, achieved by presenting human beings with simpler and more efficient ways of conducting important activities. For this reason, the need to create an environment that favors more research, both intensive and extensive, cannot be overemphasized. Enhanced research, in most cases, produces results that are instrumental in speeding up development in key aspects of human life. This in itself seems to agree with the view presented that “there is no hope of doing perfect research” (Griffiths 97). The essay aims to give evidence supporting this view.
In order to provide evidence supporting the claims, it is mandatory that one understands what perfect research means. Research, according to the Macmillan English Dictionary is the detailed study of something in order to discover new facts (“research”). The definition describes research as the act of constantly looking into better ways of carrying out any activity or more efficient cures to ailments. In addition, it makes provisions for the possibility revisiting theories that exist already to make improvements and amendments. Perfection is achieving a height of accuracy that is unsurpassable. The phrase ‘perfect research’ would therefore be a self-contradicting statement because if research is perfect, why is there still ongoing research? It would mean that there is nothing more that can be done in order to revise a conclusion, or find an improved way of doing anything. Perfect research, for example, would have meant that the findings that the belief commonly held before the twentieth century that the earth’s continents are immovable would still hold true. Alfred Wegener would not have formulated the continental drift theory (SciGuy).
There are other numerous research studies undertaken today that have existed for an extended period. This is not necessarily, because the study has failed to yield any results. In most instances, there are beliefs in improvement of the findings with time. An example of such research is on the solar system. There are constantly new discoveries about the solar system revolutionizing the worldview on the sun, planets, and other things that constitute it. Pluto was for more than seventy-five years, since 1930, counted as one of the nine planets. In 2006, however, research by the International Astronomical Union revealed that Pluto did not qualify as a planet since it did not clear the environment around its orbit, a criterion that all planets must meet. This consequently led to the classification of Pluto as a dwarf planet, one of the largest in the Kuiper belt, a zone beyond Neptune (Lew 10). With perfect research, there would not be dismissing Pluto as a planet in the solar system.
Another example that proves that research is imperfect is the circumstance surrounding the invention of the first vaccine. In the eighteenth century, smallpox claimed many lives, killing as many as thirty percent of the infected population. Before the twentieth century, the best-known way to survive the disease was to contract it and survive. This would render the survivor immune to any future attacks. Even so, those who were lucky enough to survive faced the chances of living with unsightly scars or blindness for the rest of their lives. In 1976, a British doctor, Edward Jenner, conducted research on the connection between cowpox and smallpox. He discovered that exposing individuals to the non-lethal cowpox made them immune to smallpox. Using this knowledge, scientists were able to come up with a vaccination for smallpox using antibodies made for cowpox (Harris). In 1979, the feared disease was officially eradicated. This feat exists because it was not enough to conclude that the best way to be safe from smallpox was to survive an attack. There is still research towards eradicating other deadly viruses in the world today.
Research cannot be perfect. Thanks to this fact, there is constant change in the areas of life that need to evolve. Take the agriculture industry for example, there are new discoveries that enable farmers to produce better quality foods and in bulk. This supports human life. If research were perfect, most sectors would still be engaged in manual energy-consuming time-wasting production processes. In addition, the mortality rates from some diseases would be high due to lack of vaccines or medication. Research sustains life, enhancing efficiency and productivity. There is therefore hope that in future, it will lead to the most optimal solutions of all time for the sake of future generations.
Harris, William. “10 Science Experiments that Changed the World”. Discovery. Discovery Communications, LLC, n.d. Web. 26 Nov. 2012.
Lew, Kristi. Space! The Dwarf Planet Pluto. New York: Marshall Cavendish Corporation, 2010. Print.
“Research.” Macmillan English Dictionary. International Student ed. 2005. Print.
SciGuy [Berger Eric]. “The top 10 most spectacularly wrong widely held scientific theories” Chron.Houston Chronicle, 24 Nov. 2010. Web. 26 Nov. 2012