Secondary research occurs when a project requires a summary or collection of existing data. As opposed to data collected directly from respondents or "research subjects" for the express purposes of a project, (often called "empirical" or "primary research"), secondary sources already exist.
These secondary soures could include previous research reports, newspaper, magazine and journal content, and government and NGO statistics. Sometimes secondary research is required in the preliminary stages of research to determine what is known already and what new data is required, or to inform research design. At other times, it may make be the only research technique used.
A key preformance area in secondary research is the full citation of original sources, usually in the form of a complete listing or annotated listing.
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