Research Method (B31)

The University of Hull MBA students in Bahrain for the B31 intake (and locally supported by MDCI) will be having their next module (Research Method) between the 29th October – 1st November and the lecturer will be Dr. Norman O'Neill is Senior Fellow in the University of Hull Business School.


[to-item title="Welcome note"]

Dear MBA colleagues,

The time we spend together will be balanced between lectures and exercises, to enable you to achieve a clear understanding of the research methods we shall focus on, corresponding to an in-depth discussion of their direct relevance to your proposed research.  On the final day, the expectation is that you will each give a ten minute power-point presentation on your project proposal.

The research project proposal (up to 5,000 words) is, for most colleagues, preparation for their MBA dissertation (of between 15,000 - 20,000 words).

In brief: the project proposal is a statement of intent: it is what you intend to do.

Accordingly,  say to yourself at the outset: “This is what I intend to research; here is an initial evaluation of the existing literature on the subject; these are the probable research questions derived from my literature review; these are the research methods I intend to use to answer those research questions; and this is what I expect find: .............”

My expectation is, therefore, that in preparation for the project proposal (your statement of intent) you will initially define an area of investigation, critically assess the existing literature on the subject, from which you will derive your research questions, and then propose the methods of investigation to answer those research questions.  Where possible, it is always a good idea to indicate what you expect to discover.

The eventual format should be as follows:

  • Title
  • Background rationale and literature review
  • Research questions and objectives
  • Methods (suitably justified)
  • Expectations of research findings
  • Summary
  • References and bibliography

Looking forward to seeing you all on Tuesday 28th October in Doha.

Yours sincerely,

Norman O’Neill

Profile of  Dr  Norman O'Neill


[to-item title="Biographical Details / Experience"] 

Dr. Norman O'Neill is Senior Fellow in the University of Hull Business School. His expertise is wide-ranging and multidisciplinary. In addition to his first degree in Economics, Politics and Sociology, he has a Ph.D. in Industrial Sociology, and a Certificate in Technology (First Class). Before his university appointment he served an industrial apprenticeship, and subsequently worked in R&D and industrial consultancy, including work on the application of electronic equipment in photolithography (optical lithography is a technique used in the manufacture of microprocessors).

Throughout his university career, he has constantly been involved in what is now known as, "Reach Out". This is evident from a summary of his experience: in business and commerce; in industry; more widely in academia (as the former Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, and former Head of Marketing and Business Strategy in the Hull University Business School); as a researcher with an international reputation for applied strategic research, having written six books and numerous articles related to business development; experience in local government; as a research consultant in the UK and overseas– i.e. for the European Commission (he is a member of the prestigious Jean Monnet Group of Professors and Experts on the European Union), and foreign governments, through secondment supported by the Overseas Development Agency and British Council.  He has also given papers at, or been a Visiting Professor in, the Universities of Khartoum (where he was on secondment for two years), Dar es Salaam, the New School for Social Research, Fordham University, City University (New York), Rhode Island College, Temple University (USA), the Universities of Stockholm, Bergen (Norwegian Research Centre for Organisation & Management), and the American University in Cairo.

Additional experience in the business-higher education interface includes his having been: the University's representative on the Hull Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Shipping (and an active member of its Development Committee); founding chairman of HEBIC– the Humberside European Business Information Centre (a public-private consortium, providing professional advice to the regional business community) located in the University of Hull Library; a Director of Hull Enterprise Development, Limited (otherwise known as "Business Link"); a Director of Hull Area Business Advice Centre, Limited; and a Director of OPNHE- Orchard Park and North Hull Enterprise, Limited.


[to-item title="Teaching commitments"]

International business; research methods; business development and economic regeneration: the context in which business decisions are taken; and regional business development (in the Middle East, east Africa, and northern Europe).

Research Interests:

The context in which business decisions are taken; project management; business development and economic regeneration; business development in the Middle East, east Africa, and northern Europe; and regional business development.

Things to Remember

  • Assignment questions must always be attached to your assignment.  Remember to write your name, enrollment number on the course work assignment sheet.
  • Delay submission of assignment or failure to sit the exam has to be informed in prior.
  • Applicable only for mitigating circumstances. Code 200 or failure would be declared in any other case except the above.
  • Tutor name should be clearly written on the course work assignment sheet along with the assignment title.
  • Enrollment number and MDCI number should always be indicated in all your communication.
  • Library- Ref books are available but a limited number please return them within 10 days to enable your fellow students to read them.
  • Fees: please ensure that you pay your fees in advance.  Please note that the University has a strict rules and regulations concerning the payment of instalments.
  • Please fill out the course Evaluation sheets at the end of the module.  These will be distributed by your class representative and should be returned to him.

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