Research is applied curiosity

I sometimes hear colleagues say that they’re ‘not researchers’ but after some probing it turns out that what they really mean is, they don’t love the process of conducting formal research as is often required by higher education institutions.

I try to think of research and scholarship as applied curiosity, which reframes the concept in a way that feels more open-ended, less structured, and therefore more appealing.

After all, most people are curious about something and research is just the name we give to a process for learning more about the thing we’re curious about.