[Scroll down for English translation.]
最後は、方法です。別々の分野の人々は、世界を理解するために 、それぞれのフィルターで物事を見ています。理系と文系は同じ世界に暮らしてますが、別の世界を見ています。だから、同じ問題を研究していて、別の答えになったとしてもおかしくないです。その 方法や手順 が科学的である限り、問題はありません。研究者は適切な手順を使って、一つ一つ問題を解決します。
研究とは、科学的な方法で地道に答えを見つけ出していくことだと思います。 したがって、 研究者はそのような仕事を楽しんでできる人に向いていると思います。
I am a researcher. Upon graduating from university, I had only done research-related work – so, last year I took a break from research and tried out coordination work instead. Through that, I realised that I am still more suitable for research. Therefore, right now I am looking for research-related work.
In my opinion, I think that there are a few characteristics that the researcher should have. First is curiosity. Questions emerge from everything you see – for example, why did that situation happen? What is this design for? What is the best way to do this? Connected to the observation that children usually have many questions, I think that everyone has the potential for being a researcher. However, there is still a consideration of whether the questions are interesting, if they are worth investigating, or if some other researchers have already come to a conclusion to the question [note: I have more thoughts on this but I didn’t want to elaborate in Japanese – basically even if other researchers have come to a conclusion, if you get a good angle of the research question it may still be worthwhile to investigate it, maybe even debunk the original conclusion. But if you are studying a question that already has a pretty well-established answer, and come to the same answer… well, that might not be the most interesting study.]. There is a difference between a good research question and a lesser one.
Secondly, is the ability to work for a long time until you get the answer. As there is a possibility of not arriving to a conclusion for a long time, one needs to persevere. Research work is suitable for those who cannot stop thinking about the problem until they solve it. However, a stubborn character might annoy the colleagues working around them, this is something that we need to be mindful about.
Lastly, the important thing is the methodology. People from different fields see the world differently, with different filters. Scholars of the arts and the sciences live in the same world, but see different ones. Therefore, it is not strange for the same research question to have different answers. As long as the methodology and procedures are scientific, there is no problem [comment: well, here there may be some dispute on what is considered scientific methods in different fields, but that’s a can of worms that I don’t want to open.]. The researcher needs to use appropriate procedures, and answer the question step by step.
Research is about using scientific methods to systematically and gradually find the answer to a research question. A researcher is therefore someone who finds this kind of work interesting, I believe.
Note: I wrote the above in Japanese first, and did the translation later on. It is interesting to observe that something that I feel runs quite smoothly in Japanese doesn’t have the same ring to it in English – and the resulting translation sometimes either sounds clunky, or has to lose some nuance that it had before when it was in Japanese. Which is to say, when I write in Japanese I think differently from when I write in English. This is nothing new in the psychology of linguistics, but I thought that it was quite interesting, experientially.
Note 2: Featured image is what I made when I was doing my PhD, with the angst and self-doubt of a researcher, no technique, and possibly lots of wine.