Business and Society
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Research Brief Assignment
This assignment has the dual purpose of giving you the opportunity to become familiar with the latest thinking on corporate social responsibility while helping you to develop your business research and communication skills.
Here are the basics:
2-3 pages (not including title page with the title of the assignment, your name and date); use of a required format – template will be supplied; APA citation and reference style and standard business usage / grammar
200 points (See Supplement: Assignment Grading Criteria) Due dates (note that this assignment takes place over three (3) units):
o First draft due by 11:30pm on last day of Unit 5. Failure to submit a completed research brief first draft on time will result in zero (0) points for the entire Research Brief assignment.
o Peer reviews (giving and receiving feedback on your first draft research briefs) in Unit 6 Discussion. Failure to participate in peer review discussion will result in zero (0) points for the entire Research Brief assignment.
o Revised (Final) research brief due by 11:30pm on the last day of Unit 7.
Research Brief: Detailed Instructions
This assignment asks you to write a managerial summary of a published academic research article on corporate social responsibility. Each student will be assigned an article by the instructor which has been pre-screened as relevant and reasonable for this assignment. Each article has been published within the last 5 years and reports on CSR research conducted by the author(s). This is an opportunity for you to see what academic business research looks like. If this is your first look at an academic research article, you will find it challenging to draw useful information from it. And that is your challenge for this assignment. Your assignment is to transform the academic research article you have been assigned into managerially-useful information. This will be a great skill for your managerial toolkit.
Required Format for Research Brief
Your research brief must be your original work written in engaging language that blends empirical research results and practical advice/examples in a format that facilitates fast knowledge acquisition and long-term retention. Write your review in language that is non-technical (without jargon) and conversational, making sure that you use proper business English. Imagine that you are sitting across the table from a manager and have just been asked to explain this research article and its practical application to her. The following format is required:
1. Your name
2. Research Brief Title
Create a descriptive and engaging title that is not the same as the original article title.
3. Original article reference
APA reference style. Include hyperlink provided by instructor.
4. Key Points (use as a heading)
The first bullet should be an “overview” statement for your review.
The following bullets should follow the main arguments in the article, so that a reader gets a preview of all of the important points being made in the article.
Each key point should have its own bullet, and all ideas appearing in the key points should also be made in the body of the article.
Each bullet must have a maximum of 25 words and end with a period.
There should be 3-5 bullets in total.
5. Overview (use as a heading)
The overview should contain 30-50 words providing the “big picture” of your article in engaging terms that a businessperson will understand and benefit from.
The overview may follow the key points.
Please remember to write as though you are speaking directly to a manager, not a professor.
6. What the Research Shows (use as a heading)
In this section, tell the manager what the research in the article found, in layman’s terms.
This section contains 200 words maximum and must include the name of the journal where the research appeared (in italics), where the author(s) work, where the data came from, how it was analyzed and what the research findings were.
At your discretion, this section may also include mention of any context needed for the empirical findings to make sense to a businessperson.
7. Why This Matters (use as a heading)
In this section, tell the reader what the research findings mean to someone leading an organization/managing people. How can it make them more effective? How can it help their teams or organizations perform better? Why does this research matter to them?
This section must be between 200-350 words and must include well-crafted managerial implications of what you took from the article (your words rather than from the original journal article itself). Include at least one example from business practice that names specific companies and/or business leaders. This may come from the article or from your own research.
8. In Conclusion (use as a heading)
In this section, wrap things up and highlight one significant idea or learning point from the related media/links (see 9.) that you have found (so readers are referred to the links).
This section must be between 25-50 words.
9. Related Links (use as a heading)
Provide links to at least two related and relevant, quality third party articles (not including the article you are reviewing), videos or websites, using the following formatting:
o Title of the linked content – URL
o Title of the linked content – URL
Example_CSR Pays for Itself.docx*
*Please note that any examples provided in this class are only examples. They are not your assignments. They may or may not have been produced in response to the exact instructions for your assignment. They do, however, demonstrate several of the key concepts expected in your assignments. For your assignment, follow the instructions that you have been given. An example is not an assignment. Also, do not assume that this was an “A” paper, it wasn’t.
Submitting your Research Brief and Taking Part in Peer Review
Prepare and submit your research brief as a Word or .pdf file to ensure that it can be accessed by the instructor and those who will be providing you with feedback.
Please place one empty line between paragraphs. Every paragraph of the entire research brief should be left justified with no
Due dates: o You will be posting your first draft twice:
First, post it for the instructor’s review in Unit 5 by 11:30pm on last day of Unit 5. Failure to submit a completed research brief first draft on time will result in a reduction of 50 points for the Research Brief assignment in addition to other late work penalties.
Second, post it in the Unit 6 Discussion by 11:30pm on the first day of Unit 6. Peer reviews (giving and receiving feedback on your first draft research briefs) take place in Unit 6 Discussion. Failure to participate in peer review discussion will result in a reduction of 50 points for the Research Brief assignment, in addition to loss of all points for the discussion.
o After you have received feedback on your draft research brief, revise as appropriate and post it for the instructor to grade in Unit 7 by 11:30pm on the last day of Unit 7.