The Australian Bureau of Statistics provides the following definitions.
Experimental or theoretical work undertaken to acquire new knowledge without looking for long term benefits other than advancement of knowledge. It includes most Humanities research.
Experimental or theoretical work undertaken to acquire new knowledge directed into specified broad areas in the expectation of useful discoveries. It provides the broad base of knowledge necessary for the solution of recognised practical problems.
Original work undertaken primarily to acquire new knowledge with a specific practical application in view. It is undertaken either to determine possible uses for findings of basic research, or to determine new ways of achieving some specific and predetermined objective.
Systematic work, using existing knowledge gained from research and/or practical experience that this directed to producing new materials, products or devices and to installing new processes, systems and services or to improving substantially those already produced or installed. In the Social Sciences, experimental development includes transferring knowledge gained through research into operational programs.