Is it right to copy the format of past journal articles in one's research as an upcoming researcher?

To give an example assuming there is a research article on "the dynamics of informal urbanism in Asia - the case of Indian cities." Can I pick up the same reasoning, albeit slightly, and apply it to, say, "the dynamics of informal urbanism in Africa - the case of Kenya"?

Will that be acceptable?

  • Is it even remotely likely that a slight reasoning modification would yield any relevant information to such a different case? All researcher take inspiration from what they read in some way, but you sound like you expect to get publishable material without giving the expected input (i.e. study your subject of interest about which you have original ideas). This has little chance to be anything close to research. – Benoît Kloeckner Oct 14 '14 at 11:38
  • @BenoîtKloeckner I would be less pessimistic. I would see this as a replication in a different context. That is how we find out whether the context matters for that particular application. – Maarten Buis Oct 14 '14 at 11:50
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    @EnthusiasticStudent I believe your edit changes the meaning of the question. It's not clear whether the OP is referring specifically to the methodology, or to a lot of other things. – ff524 Oct 15 '14 at 10:44

It can be done in an acceptable way. I would frame such an article as a replication: This is what XX and YY found in India. This is what I know about Kenya. So this is how I expect the findings to be different (or the same) in Kenya. Now lets look.

Beware of plagiarism though. Your article will be close to the original, so make sure you don't (unconciously) copy phrases, and cite every time you use ideas from the original article.

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    I think "It can be done in an acceptable way" is a more accurate first sentence than "It is acceptable." – ff524 Oct 14 '14 at 19:33
  • @ff524 good point – Maarten Buis Oct 15 '14 at 7:54
  • +1. I like the idea of "this is what they did in India, let's see if it works in Kenya". – Gimelist Oct 15 '14 at 8:17

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