What is Research and Development (R&D)?

Definition: Research and development (R&D) is to any activity associated with creating new innovations in existing products, services, or procedures or the discovery of new innovations that lead to the creation new products. In other words, it’s an ongoing process of investigation that looks forward to create new things.

What Does R&D Mean?

What is the definition of R&D? Research and Development is a crucial part of every business. It is an ongoing process of improvement that can be applied to current existing products, services, or processes. It can also be focused on developing new ones. For many companies, research and development is what keeps the business up to date and a step in front of their competitors.

In industries like pharmaceuticals, chemistry, military, and technology, R and D is a crucial department. If the companies in these industries aren’t moving ahead, they are falling behind their competition. They must constantly be looking for ways to increase their products’ effectiveness and come up with new ideas that will shape the market.

Some companies relegate their R and D activities to a specific department, while others treat it as an ongoing process that permeates the whole organization. Some companies train their employees to think with an R&D perspective, so they can research and develop new strategies to be more effective at their jobs as a part of their routine.

Let’s look at an example.


June Pharmaceuticals Co. is a company that produces different types of painkillers. Many doctors prescribe these painkillers to patients with different health conditions. As part of its strategic plan for the next year, the company wants to launch a pediatric painkiller. The Chief Executive Officer handed this task to the company’s R and D team, so they can start working on the project.

The team now must investigate (research) if it is possible to develop this kind of product and study the composition, counter effects, dosage, and other elements to bring this drug before the FDA. After all the research is done they will have to produce it to conduct some tests according to regular industry practices, which would be the development part of the process.

Summary Definition

Define Research and Development: R & D means the costs associated with exploring new technologies or processes in an effort to make new discoveries into new products or services.