Table of Contents

Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Spatially Integrated Social Science

Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Spatially Integrated Social Science

Handbooks of Research Methods and Applications series

Edited by Robert Stimson

The chapters in this book provide coverage of the theoretical underpinnings and methodologies that typify research using a Spatially Integrated Social Science (SISS) approach. This insightful Handbook is intended chiefly as a primer for students and budding researchers who wish to investigate social, economic and behavioural phenomena by giving explicit consideration to the roles of space and place. The majority of chapters provide an emphasis on demonstrating applications of methods, tools and techniques that are used in SISS research, including long-established and relatively new approaches.

Chapter 5: The literature review: the fundamental element of a research project

Kevin O’Connor

Subjects: economics and finance, regional economics, geography, economic geography, environmental geography, human geography, research methods in geography, research methods, research methods in economics, research methods in geography, urban and regional studies, regional economics, research methods in urban and regional studies


A literature review lies at the heart of conducting research, and in particular in undertaking a research project, and especially in writing a thesis or dissertation. It provides the intellectual context of the problem and will be utilized in all parts of a research project. To illustrate that effect Table 5.1 has been constructed. It shows a typical thesis structure, and outlines the connections of each stage to the literature view. Initially it has a fundamental influence upon the methodology used. That itself might even be drawn directly from the literature, where the researcher decides to explore a well-researched issue in a new context.

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