research rating scale
Here’s how I evaluate research importance in social science. Averages, of course:
- Great problem, great solution.
- Great problem, partial/boring solution.
- Decent problem, great solution.
- Great problem, empirical/descriptive work.
- Decent problem, partial/boring solution.
- Decent problem, empirical/descriptive work.
- Small problem, any solution.
- Bizarre/highly technical approaches to any problem.
- Definitional/taxonomic/philosophical writings on any problem.
- History of social thought.
Random comments: I love good research in all categories. Social science journals usually only deal with #5 and up. Grad students dream of #1, but you usually start with something lower on the list. Great researchers can do it many ways – the once in a lifetime #1 or the expert who hammers home a bunch of #4’s. #8 may be in the eye of the beholder. European/critical theory people love #9 and #10. Strong disciplinarians would move #8 a few notches, perhaps to #5.