I am applying for Postgraduate degree research but for that I need to submit a Research Proposal with the application and it is very confusing for me because I never did any kind of research before.

I have been a small business owner for the last 7-8 years and I want to do research in the same field (Entrepreneurship or small- or family-business related), but I just don't know how to narrow down and select a specific topic.

Can you suggest some guidelines to select a topic?

  • I've edited the question because asking for advice about specific research topics is out of scope for this community.
    – aeismail
    Jan 26 '14 at 15:18
  • I strongly suggest discussing this issue with the faculty who are writing your recommendation letters; those letters are supposed to address your potential for research.
    – JeffE
    Jan 26 '14 at 20:24

I have been a small business owner for the last 7-8 years

Have you run into issues/problems in those 7-8 years? Are those problems specific to your own business? Could other business owners have the same or similar problems?

Can you generalize those problems so that you can conduct research on possible solutions to those problems in academic approach?

Can you find the causes of those problems from academic perspective? How would you propose to do so? Should the government play a role or not? How could the society as a whole participate? Etc. Etc. There are hundreds of topics out there. Take your pick. Good luck!


Why do you want to work as a Postdoc in this field? The answer to this question (as long as it's a scientific answer and not reputation etc.) can lead you to a good research topic.

Nonetheless, thechniques like creative writing, brainstorming etc. can be helpful, but this is a bit out of scope for this platform.

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