Students are expected to:
• develop effective search strategies for locating information relevant to the assignment
• improve their ability to analyse and synthesise information from various sources;
• apply the tools discussed in the “International Business Decision Making” course to the
analysis and interpretation of real-world business cases.
Description of the assignment
Students are requested to choose a manufacturing or service firm of their own interest among
those listed on the following page, and submit a case report, based also on the analysis of relevant
background material in addition to the firm’s sources, addressing the following issues:
• The importance of an effective decision-making process in achieving organisational
objectives. (10 points)
• Which strategic and organisational decisions have been made within the company, providing
concrete examples of both decision types and estimating the process(es) adopted in reaching
them. In particular: areas in which decision trees, Multi Criteria Decision Making and/or
classification approaches were probably adopted or could have been adopted in making
these decisions. (30 points)
• How the dynamics of the industry in which the company operates could have influenced its
managers in making decisions. (15 points)
• Projection of the company’s future sales (revenues and/or units) adopting appropriate
forecasting models, based on historical data. (25 points)
• Assumptions/suggestions about future developments, particularly in terms of decisionmaking processes. (20 points)
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List of potential companies to choose from
|1. Arcadia Biosciences
2. Monsanto Company
4. International Flavors & Fragrances
5. Delphi Automotive PLC
6. Exco Technologies Limited
7. Lear Corporation
8. Motor Car Parts of America
9. Tenneco Inc.
10. Wabco Holdings Inc.
|11. Molson Coors Brewing Company
12. Castle Brands Inc.
13. Philip Morris International
14. Hershey’s Co.
15. Dean Foods Company
16. Panasonic Corp.
17. Schneider Electric
18. Stanley Furniture Co. Inc.
19. Lifetime Brands Inc.
Each student must make sure, before starting the assignment (by the end of week 4 at the latest) and
in agreement with the instructor (with a written note, either in presence or via email), that the
chosen firm and industry1 are different from those chosen by his/her colleagues. In case of potential
conflict among choices, priority will be given to students on a “first come first served” basis.
Outline of the report
It includes the School and course names, the project title, the student’s full names, the
lecturer’s full name and the submission date.
Table of contents.
It includes all the headings with appropriate page numbers, including References and
Appendices and, where applicable, the list of tables and figures.
It summarizes the major points and contributions of the report.
It introduces the reader to the case you are going to discuss.
It explains how the information and data were collected and processed.
Findings and analysis.
(see under “Description of the assignment”)
Conclusions and recommendations.
They recap the main characteristics of the chosen company, draw key insights from the case
analysis and suggest, where applicable and meaningful, future developments for the
company’s business, organisational solutions, and decision-making processes.
STRUCTURE AND FORMAT OF THE PROJECT/REPORT:
This is an individual assignment.
Following the description of the assignment and the above outline, make sure your writing is
precise and to the point, and that all sources are adequately referenced.
Your paper should consist of about 2000 +/-10% words, excluding figures and tables, appendices
Format of the report:
1. The report should display a coherent and exhaustive structure: title page should include student
name, module name, lecturer name, date and school name followed by contents page, executive
summary, introduction, methodology, findings and analysis, conclusions and recommendations,
referencing and appendices.
2. The report should be prepared as a neatly typed Word document (Times New Roman 12 points),
with double spacing and page numbering.
3. All reports will be discussed in class in a Power Point presentation of no more than 10 slides in
about 15/20 minutes. The presentation should be a summary of your work, printed 4 slides per
page and submitted attached to your project, otherwise submission will be rejected.
4. Some supporting tables, graphs or work/data taken from other sources may be included in
appendices if they are not critical for the comprehension of the main body of the report.
5. Especially if you use tables, figures and graphs within the main body of the report, try to
summarize in their title what is the main point you want to make with them, and make sure to
indicate legends, meaning and scales of the axes (if applicable), and any detail that could better
clarify their role in the report.
6. All sources must be referenced in the text (no footnoting!) and a full bibliography must be
provided (including visited websites) in the Harvard style referencing system. Paraphrasing or
direct quotes taken from other sources must be clearly indicated with citations.
7. Students are reminded that depth, relevance and variety are the crucial elements of quality
research. Wikipedia is not considered to be a relevant source of information; any students
referencing Wikipedia will be deducted marks! Alternatively, if you find information on
Wikipedia, use the original sources listed at the bottom of the article.
8. Students are reminded to use valid and peer-reviewed references to support their work.
Websites should only be used if they represent an established source and only for facts and
figures. Students should make the most of academic and practitioner books and articles.
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9. Submission should be by the deadline below and should include a hard copy to the lecturer
together with the printed slides, and an electronic copy to your academic coordinator.
10. All work must conform to University regulations on Cheating, Collusion and Plagiarism’ as
described in your program handbook. You are advised to use the Harvard referencing style and
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