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Which is grammatically correct? Or are they both correct?

(1) We need to think about what the best way to explain the situation is.
(2) We need to think about what is the best way to explain the situation.
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TakaWhich is grammatically correct? Or are they both correct?

(1) We need to think about what the best way to explain the situation is.
(2) We need to think about what is the best way to explain the situation.

The first sentence is grammatically correct.

I would rephrase as: We need to think about the best way to explain the situation.
Hi Taka

There's no agreement on this. From a strictly grammatical point of view, only (1) is correct because the finite verb (is) comes after the subject in an indirect question. However, (2) is widely used and therefore I consider it correct as well, even though it is actually ungrammatical. Let's just say it's idiomatic! That magic word explains a lot of linguistic peculiarities in English.

CB
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If you must have the what clause rather than ... think about the best way ..., as suggested above, then there are three choices. (There are usually three choices when you have a "heavy" construction like this one.)

My preferences, in order from best to worst (all grammatically correct), are:

We need to think about what the best way is to explain the situation.
We need to think about what the best way to explain the situation is.
We need to think about what is the best way to explain the situation.

The first is far superior to the other two, in my opinion. Opinions will vary!!!

CJ
Sorry to jump in here.

I'd like to know the function of 'what' in this context. I feel Yoong Liat's sentence is more concise.

Thanks.
what is a fused relative meaning that which or the thing that.
It's called 'fused' because it combines (fuses) antecedent (the thing) and relative pronoun (that) into one word (what).

Edit: what is probably best analyzed as an ordinary interrogative pronoun in this sentence.

CJ
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I much prefer
which (if one talks of selection from several solutions)
to
what (gives description of the solution)

Thus:
We need to think about which is the best way (from several alternatives) to explain the situation.

The hits at the New York Times:
8,390 from nytimes.com for "which is the best way to"
19,200 from nytimes.com for "what is the best way to"