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Expert offers advice on how to 'pitch' a good research idea

April 20, 2015

For many students or junior academics--and even for senior investigators--initiating a new piece of research can be a daunting experience, and they often do not know where or how to begin. A recent Accounting and Finance article offers a simple new research tool that can act as a template designed for pitching research ideas to mentors or other experts.

The two-page pitching template includes 4 preliminary components: working title, research question, key papers, and motivation. Next is a '3-2-1 countdown' that is based on 3 elements - idea, data, and tools; 2 questions - What's new? and So what?; and 1 bottom line - contribution. Finally, other considerations to include at the end of the pitch may pertain to whether collaboration is needed or what research risks might arise.

"This is just the beginning--now that I have established a solid academic foundation for the template tool through this article, I am forging on with great energy and enthusiasm to push its universality to the limit," said the article's author Robert Faff, a Professor of Finance and the Director of Research at the University of Queensland Business School, in Australia. "I will do this both in terms of discipline area and geographic reach. On the former, the online library already exceeds 30 different areas and is growing fast. On the latter, beyond Australia, countries in which I have already presented 'pitching' talks include New Zealand, Slovenia, Belgium, Scotland, Romania, Italy, Norway, and Germany - and soon China, Mexico, and Argentina. So, look out for the 'pitch doctor'!"


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