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What is your research workflow when it comes to writing papers and using software for citations and notes? (primary relation to literature review)

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Posted by Dr Andus
Mar 15, 2011 at 10:48 PM


david wrote:
> >How do you manage your
>citations and notes on research and use them for writing papers / literature review?

I think a lot depends on how complex your research/writing project is. Clearly the more complex and bigger the project, the more need for sophisticated solutions. I don’t think there is a single tool that does it all and that serves all purposes. Eventually one needs to assemble the assortment of tools that suit the purpose of the given project best.

Here’s my work flow (some of these are simultaneous):

- capture website info with Surfulater;
- capture writing ideas in Notes on iPod Touch/iPad, which syncs with Gmail;
- collect references in EndNote and link to PDFs on PC hard drive;
- read and annotate PDFs with PDF XChange Viewer on PC or GoodReader on iPod Touch/iPad;
- copy quotes and notes from PDF and Gmail and paste them into Whizfolders in order to organise them into hierarchical outline; use Whizfolders as main database of ideas and quotes;
- use NVivo for analysing other collected material (text, image, audio, video).
- draft final outlines in Natara Bonsai;
- do the final writing in MS Word.

This is what I’ve been doing so far, however I’m interested in replacing EndNote with Citavi and introducing Scrivener for Windows between the Bonsai outline and the MS Word as an interim step.

I also use several other software for managing audio files and image files, as well as brainstorming and mindmapping tools. I may also need to use some timelining software and UltraRecall for organising thousands of digital files. So obviously this is for a big project lasting for several years, not just the literature review.