The problems that afflict research memos also afflict other long documents like settlement agreements and contracts. You can adapt this recipe for any of them.
My legal-writing teacher in law school required memos to be formatted in what I would call the classic typewriter layout — one-inch margins on all sides, 12-point font, and double-spaced lines.
But have you ever seen a book, newspaper, or magazine that uses this layout? No. Why not? Because it’s not optimally legible. So why would anyone use it? Because it suits the severely limited capabilities of the typewriter. So if we don’t use typewriters anymore, why does everyone still use this layout?
My thoughts exactly.