The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has developed a standardised approach to international research and development, published as the 2002 edition of the 'FRASCATI MANUAL' (ISBN 92-64-19903-9). On page 30, the Frascati Manual states that:
R and D covers three activities: basic research, applied research and
Research and experimental development (R&D) comprise
creative work undertaken on a systematic basis in order to
increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of man,
culture and society, and the use of this stock of knowledge to
devise new applications.
R and D covers three activities: basic research, applied research and experimental development.
The study of methods for acquiring, storing, processing, communicating and reasoning about
information, and the role of interactivity in natural and artificial systems,
through the implementation, organisation and use of computer hardware, software and other resources.
[Computer Science and Informatics] are characterised by the rigorous application of analysis,
experimentation and design.'
Computer Science seeks to develop theories for defining systems of computation and methods for their use. In many ways, it is concerned with the effectiveness of processes for organising instructions that are intended to manipulate information, such that desirable outcomes result from their execution. The products of Computer Science are new logical design methodologies, algorithms, and tools, methods for verification and validation of concepts. So Computer Science defines principles for creating and working with information and thereby defines new arenas for working with knowledge. CS research may be applied in contexts that have inherent risk, such as in systems for glass-cockpit flight controls or systems to support health care teams and systems to provide healthcare information.
The study of human beings fits into Computer Science research when it is important to externally validate a Computer Science concept or practice. Informally, it is easy to distinguish between data, information and knowledge. However, from a scientific perspective there are many unsolved problems to do with the conditions that permit one to transform data into information (typically, requiring a known problem context) and then how to derive knowledge from information. The fields of Human-Computer Interaction and Computer-Supported Cooperative Work are cases of CS research that fall into this category. In these fields, processes for organising instructions must extend a concern for how their execution should be accomplished by division of labour between one or more machines and one or more human beings. Such processes are thus governed jointly by an appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of automation in concert with the strenghts and weaknesses of cognitive and social systems.
Several disciplines might address the same set of issues within a given interdisciplinary field of research, such as HCI, but will do so in different ways. This is because the scientific concerns that motivate interest in the issues are quite different. That means there is a particular communication burden on those who wish to convey their results both within and outside of their "home discipline". The relevance and assumptions of the work need to be made clear for each of the audiences that might benefit from it.