My question (How can physicists help in theoretical biology, besides math and fresh perspectives?) is decided to be off topic because of this reason:

However, please do not ask questions about:

  • The content of your research, rather than the process of doing research

As I stated in this comment, at first I have doubted that the question I ask will be off topic, but after seeing the tag, I think this question is on topic.

Searching for this reason, I only find out the proposal of changing the help center.

In the Is "What background do I need to do research in specific field X?" on-topic at Academia.SE? question, ff524 agrees that this kind of question is on topic.

  • 1
    I'm not quite sure how the line is being drawn myself - I thought it was a good question and answered it. :-)
    – jakebeal
    Commented Jan 3, 2015 at 13:49
  • Thanks for that. It's not that I don't satiate with that answer, in fact that's all I expect. I just want to make it open again. I am thinking about ask it on Quora :-s
    – Ooker
    Commented Jan 3, 2015 at 17:40
  • I think this may not have gotten much attention because the title didn't really match the subject of the question. I edited the title, hopefully someone will answer it now.
    – ff524
    Commented Jan 6, 2015 at 9:32
  • Thank you @ff524, it indeed helps.
    – Ooker
    Commented Jan 6, 2015 at 22:38

1 Answer 1


Here is how I tend to think about it:

  • The process of research is anything that is primarily about scientists and their interactions (including systems for supporting those interactions)
  • The content of research is anything that is primarily about the artifacts under examination and the mechanisms used for examining them.

From that perspective, I would consider a question about the relationship between fields to be about process because the definition of a field is a flexible notion emerging primarily from the sociopolitical interactions of scientists. Your question was then a bit borderline because it asked about classes of content interacting with this idea. I'm pretty liberal about how I think about scope on this site, though, and so tend to feel that if something is borderline but we can answer it well, that it is better to include than to close.

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