Defining Research in the 21st Century
Research is evolving. We have to admit it. If we look at the present time, we often see an appreciation of creativity products. That is not the judgement of deep thinking productions. We still need that and always be. But, the appreciation of those products are not extraordinary anymore. It is interesting to ask why does this happen? To address this question, we have to look at the reason behind it. There are two reasons which will be written in the paragraphs below.
Habits in the 21st Century
In the 21st century, there are many habit differences than past habits. I want to mention two of them. First, the way of people thinking in the 21st century. In this century, people are more creative and define themselves as creative thinker. The invention of technology was responsible for this. Technology make people think differently. People are still critical but they used out of the box solution as a way to solve many burdens (Binkley, M., Erstad, O., Herman, J., Raizen, S., Ripley, M., & Rumble, M. 2010. Defining 21st century skills. Assessment and teaching of 21st century skills draft white paper: The University of Melbourne.). They want to find a creative solution rather than the usual solution. The truth is not always truth. It depends on what the definition of truth in these situations. This happens due to the possibility which is presented by technology. Technology makes impossible become possible.
Second, people act different. We can see it from how they collected data. The invention of technology gets worst when internet was introduced. Technology and internet makes people investigated phenomenon only by them. They do statistical ratios rather than field-work. For example, there are collecting data from journals, literatures and researchers from google scholar as a part of digital literacy (Yoram Eshet-Alkalai. 2004. Digital Literacy: A Conceptual Framework for Survival Skills in the Digital Era. Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia: Tel Hai Academic College, Open University of Israel; Israel). Digital literacy forces people to collect data easily. The consequence of this method is the product. Nowadays, we find vast products like policy paper, project proposal and so on. These products are occurred by the thinking and act of 21st century.
Adapted and Controlled
Then, what is research in the 21st century? If we refer to the explanations above, there are two words, creativity and flexibility. The product does not have to be a really scientific. Knowledge and science can be expressed by arts, though. We saw Leonardo Da Vinci did it with Monalisa. So, this is not new. We only have to adapt with technology. Art can be formed into technological. We can make Monalisa 3D picture, cannot we? Then, we can do the same thing with research.
Besides adaption, we need to control our imagination. Creativity does not mean vanished scientific thinking. Creativity is only a new form of thinking not an original way. Before being creative, you have to be critical first. We face a new world which technology will be the fundamental aspect of development. In the future, it is no doubt that technology will be developing more and more.
We need to adapt and control at the same time. We do not want to kill our imagination of develop things from technology but we do not intend to be so wildly as well. We can see that there are many conflicts which are produced by technology. There are many research findings which become controversial and deliver social conflict amongst society. We can do it. Remember, we are human who have brain and heart at the same body. Therefore, research in the 21st century? It will be creativity and flexibility which are followed by adaption and control.