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Part of the process of justification for conducting research that scholars engage in is the citation to existing research as a prelude or rationale for additional research. Ultimately, the process of research begins with some statement about the lack of knowledge or understanding that exists within the current literature. If the existing research could answer the question that a researcher is posing, then no justification exists to undertake additional research. The underlying justification for research lies somehow in the lack of knowledge or evidence for a particular point or claim. The assumption is that a search of the existing literature and the failure to find adequate information motivates the collection and analysis of data to evaluate a hypothesis or answer a research question. This entry ...

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