Recommendations in your thesis

What should these comply with?

Are you writing your thesis for a client? Then it is common to present recommendations at the end of your thesis. These are possible solutions or measures with which the client can solve a particular problem or achieve a goal. Of course, your recommendations must be applicable and thus meet several conditions. 

When should you give recommendations?

Usually, you give recommendations when you write your thesis for a client. In general, recommendations are common if your research question aims to solve a problem. Is your research more descriptive or explanatory? Then recommendations are not always necessary. 

Even if you are not writing your thesis for a client, you can make recommendations. For example, these could be recommendations for a broad professional group or certain bodies. 

Where do you place recommendations in your thesis?

It is common to include the recommendations in a separate chapter that follows the conclusion and discussion. Sometimes you dedicate a separate advisory report to the recommendations. Usually, you will receive guidelines for this from your educational institution or the client. 

Recommendations vs. conclusions

The recommendations in your thesis are not formulated out of thin air. They are based on the conclusions you have drawn from your research. You must substantiate each recommendation. Briefly state why you think this particular measure will yield results. Furthermore, state the result you expect from it.

Since your recommendations derive from your conclusions, there is no need to refer to sources again in the justification for your recommendations.

Examples of thesis recommendations

Suppose you have done research for a meat substitute manufacturer. You have researched on their behalf how flexitarians view this brand's current product range. The problem the client is facing is that they are not reaching enough flexitarians and want to sell more products to this target group. Your research shows that in some respects the product offering does not match what flexitarians are looking for.

Your recommendation could then be, for example:

It is recommended that brand X develops more products that resemble the texture of meat. After all, this is what flexitarians are looking for in the supermarket and competitors offer only a limited range for this. Thus, it is here that there are opportunities for brand X to increase their reach and sales among flexitarians. 

What criteria should good recommendations meet?

It is important that your recommendations are executable in several ways:

  • The recommendations should fit within the available budget. 

  • The recommendations must contribute to the outcome envisioned by the client. 

  • Your recommendations should not violate any laws or regulations. 

  • The recommendations must fit into the client's schedule. 

  • Your recommendations should be concrete. The client needs to know exactly what to do. 

Discuss the prerequisites with your client beforehand. Then you will know what requirements the recommendations in your thesis have to meet. Does your client not mention any requirements? Then you are free in how you formulate them,as long as they are realistic. 

Implementing the recommendations from your thesis

Ideally, your client will choose to implement the recommendations from your thesis. In other words, the client will want to put your recommendations into practice. Is it already certain that your client will do that? Then you can write an implementation plan. In it, you describe step by step how the client can implement your solution. 

Have you overlooked anything in your thesis?

Besides the recommendations, your thesis consists of many other parts. Want to make sure you haven’t overlooked anything? Check out our information on the thesis structure. Here, you will find links to all our articles on the various thesis components.