|EVALUATION GRID FOR PROJECT PROPOSAL Criteria||Insufficient
(0 to 9,9)
(10 to 11,9)
(12 to 14,9)
(15 & above)
– It can be a question. It may contain the field of research (eg consumer behaviour), the scope (industry and/or geographical area) and the research idea. It can also contain the name of the company you are researching.
Consumer behaviour in Western countries: is Globalization forging a unique global target?
The case of Calzificio Mura.
Thus, choose a Field (Consumer Behaviour), a scope (Western Countries), and a main question to answer (Is Globalization…). You can also add a target (e.g. 18-30 years old consumers). Please, use the business case of a specific company. If you work, please choose the case of the company where you work. Alternatively, if you have not worked after the end of the exams, choose a company at your preference.
|What is the project about?
3 main parts should tackled:
– Please, make sure to use the Harvard Referencing System and use present literature (academic books) and papers (Jstor or similar) to introduce your research questions.
Importance of the project – check how to find a gap in the current knowledge in the FMP tips given by the professor. For example:
According to the literature, Globalization is forging a common culture and, this implies, the consumer behaviour differences are fading very quickly (Levitt, 1983), but author Y says…
In the section called “importance of the project” students are supposed to have already identified key Jstor or similar papers to build the gap. Only mentioning the database that will be used to research the gap is not sufficient. In the PP, students are already expected to have identified key Jstor or similar papers or articles on the Harvard Business Review. Please, spend extra time of the spotting the gap, and read all the FMP tips because students often underestimate the time to find a good gap. It requires weeks of reading.
The importance of the topic should be built on the current research available on Jstor or similar or the Harvard Business Review. The project is important because it builds knowledge on the knowledge already available. Citing Jstor or similar papers is essential to address the importance of the project.
Yet again, the FMP is factual and builds knowledge on the academic knowledge already existing. Many citations need to made to highlight discrepancies in the current knowledge and differences of findings among researches. This also means that the scope of the FMP has to be narrowed down to a precise gap, a precise issue to be studied. This is all part of the PP.
|What are the research questions?
– Please write all of them (eg):
1) First set of questions à They have to refer to an Academic and Business perspective.
Eg1. The Globalization process is just a mere theoretical process or it could affect the business and the company’s segmentation strategies?
Eg.2 Is the Purchasing Process of Luxury goods in France Emotional (or Rational)? Is the consumer behavior framework developed by Solomon covering all the steps of the process?
2) Second set of questions à They have to refer to a real company; namely a “Business Oriented” perspective.
What are the emotions and the feelings elicited by the L’Oréal’s brands? Are they comparable across different cultures? Is the “X” KPI sufficient to measure the results?
à For students choosing the professional track, it is mandatory to either use the company in which the internship has been done, as a business case, or to apply the knowledge acquired during the internship to a real company/case/industry. There must be a strong correlation between some parts of the FMP and the internship. The “internship” refers to the internship (or job position) subjected to the GEM’s “convention de stage”.
à Avoid too “open questions” such as “What are the problems affecting the luxury industry”? à Try to narrow down the scope of your research and identify 2/3 clear problems affecting Luxury Goods. Once the problems are identified, create a question that can be proven to be right or wrong with the FMP.
All the questions should be Y/N questions, because this makes students to narrow down the topic and defend a very precise position. The FMP is not a general study about a problem. The general understanding of the problem is the starting point of the FMP (a pre-requirement), which is supposed to be before starting writing the PP.
– To sum up, The research questions must have both an academic and a business impact.
When drafting the research question, students MUST reference the academic frameworks they are testing, also in the research questions. The academic questions should be linked to a framework that shows some flaws (to be discussed in the importance of the project, where you can highlight the academic gap as a result of different opinions of authors on the same academic matter), and with the framework that will be applied to a business case. All the students (both from the academic path and professional path) needs to highlight: 1, academic gap 2. Connect the academic gap with the framework 3. Reflect the questions on the framework in the research questions 4. Define the frameworks that will be applied to a specific case in the literature review and the rational to use the framework 5. Include in the research questions the KPIs or type of measuring that can be used to test the framework.
If you are choosing the academic track, you can pick any business case. If you are choosing the professional track, students have to pick a case related to their current job/internship. The evaluation grid is the same for both paths, so all the aspects mentioned above have to be covered by everyone.
Questions should be very specific, and thus should be YES/NO questions. Open questions are out of scope, as current knowledge, articles and books should already cover the topic. For example: ‘Is the X industry attractive?’ is an open question and not relevant. For example: Was Rivarly (Porter, 200X) of the X industry was impacted by digitalization? Porter’s 5 Forces Rivarly will be measured using the average ROI in the past 5 years and the concentration of market share of the X industry (Euromonitor, 2019)
|What is the academic literature basis of the project?
Students may use academic books, the Simon Catalogues (listing dissertations with distinction), Euromonitor and all the databases available on the online library.
Thus, in the literature review part, students need to choose 3 academic frameworks, studied in class, that will be applied to the case. One of them has to be included in the research questions as well. In fact, at the end of the FMP, the students will need to write “Theoretical implications”; Namely propose amendments to a traditional theoretical framework studied in class. In addition, when mentioning academic framework, add a chart and visualize them. Visualization of frameworks, charts and data is always welcome. In the PP, the students need to have identified the papers, frameworks and main data to further developed in the FMP. It is not sufficient to only have identified the name of the books or the database to use.
Please, consider it is possible to rent for free all the academic books on Dawsonera (online GEM Library). Students receive an online copy of the academic books via this website.
|How will the student answer the research question?
Please, list and describe:
– Some practical guidelines to the research survey: eg. Type of survey chosen, the methodology to analyze data (eg. regression analysis), size of the sample (how many people will be interviewed? – recommended at least 30), how data will be collected (face-to-face interview)?
The regression analysis is expected to achieve high grades and the variables to be used in the regression analysis should be mentioned in the PP. This requires the student significant clarity in the problem definition and data analysis methodology. Namely, to be able to define these variables and a clear homogeneous sample, the students need to have found a clear academic gap, chose the academic framework, connect it with very specific research question, understand how to measure the observations and finally develop a survey and data analysis. This process should all be done in the PP, and this is the reason to leave students 4/5 months to write the PP. The PP is the roadmap of the FMP and all these milestones should have been decided in the PP. The students should also envisage the potential managerial and theoretical implications to be addressed in the FMP, linking them with the data analysis of the PP. These managerial and theoretical implications are part of the FMP evaluation grid – please check it carefully. It is the same grid for both academic path and professional path students and everything should be tackled accordingly.
It is pivotal that the sample is described and defined in the PP. 30 homogeneous observations are required and the students need to decide the sample to survey in the PP. The sampling description has to be addressed, as well as the methodology to analyse primary data.
Make sure to read the book “Research_Methods_for_Business_Students 5TH edition” by Saunders and Thornhill to write the “methodology part”
– Potential research limitations
Try to define potential limitations of the FMP and the survey. From the analysis of primary data, students may infer new findings and insights from the topic analyzed. That is why it is very important to carry out a reliable survey and define the right methodology beforehand.
Students will discuss and prove whether the initial hypotheses were true or false. Either ways, findings are always good if they have an impact on academy and business.
– Suggested software: Gantt (for planning).
Gantt one of the most common project management software used in the industry, and also taught in some courses by GEM. A graphical representation of the planning is pivotal.
Students need to set deadlines for every chapter to be written in the FMP and add these deadlines in a Gantt (preferred) or Excel chart.
For example, “The academic literature will be completed by December 15th”.
Students may find a detailed description of each chapter to be written in the FMP here below and in the FMP guidelines. There are usually 20 steps and 20 mid-terms deadline in a well done planning.
Student may find an example of a planning here below, at the end of this chapter.
|Respecting academic writing guidelines
– Use the Harvard Referencing System
It is mandatory to follow the Harvard Referencing Methodology and/or the referencing method recommended on the FMP guidelines (they are very similar). Overlooking this guideline often leads to a lower grade.
These charts are an example of the type of planning expected in the proposal:
Check list for the project proposal:
The PP needs to outline all the critical concepts, assumptions and methodology, academic frameworks, sampling, quantitative analysis in detail. It is the output in which you decide what to write, and the FMP you implement what you have designed in the PP.