Word length should be 700-800 words.
To do this project, you will choose a single commodity (see the list below), which you will then analyze in relation to globalization and development issues and theories presented throughout the term. The commodity project, therefore, should build on concepts and themes introduced in the course. The goal is to help you to engage with a real world scenario related to the broader theories explored in this course.
Step 1: Chose a commodity
Your choices are (but are not limited to):
Coffee, Tea, Loaf of bread, Rice, Soy beans (you may choose tofu, whole soybeans for human consumption known as edamame, or for animal feed), Europium (rare earth metal), Timber (choose specific type), Chocolate, Natural gas, Avocados, Beef, Bottled water (commodified water), Coconut water.
Step 2: Do some background research on the commodity, using sources like newspapers and academic articles (at least five!!!! sources), and think about the following questions:
- What is the issue/s with your commodity?
- What are the main points of the articles?
- What is the main issue or problem(s) being addressed?
- What different “sides” of the issues are presented?
- Who are the main stakeholders regarding the commodity?
- What is the conclusion reached by the author?
Step 3: The significance of your research:
Ask yourself, why you chose this commodity? How is it related to globalization and development? How is it related to everyday life?
Step 4: Select a concept
Choose any one concept from the term. You are to choose the concept that you think relates the most to your commodity or that you feel is the most interesting. There is no ‘correct’ concept; you choose. Many of the course concepts will apply to your commodity. Your objective is to select one and explain how/why it helps to understand your commodity. This will require you to go beyond the source provided. (Topics include : Globalization, International Development theory, Commodification, Critiques of Development, Labor, Global governance & Colonialism..) Please check the attached file is my syllabus of this class, choose one concept that related and listed on the syllabus.
How to Structure Your Proposal (i.e. a template)
1st paragraph: Introduce the commodity of your choice and the current issues related to it. Based on the background, develop your research question.
Research question is the most important part of your research proposal. To say it simply, your research question phrases (clearly and succinctly) what you do not know that you want to find out through doing this project. Your research question functions like a ‘back bone’ that keeps your paper together.
2nd paragraph: Define the concept you chose and explain how it helps to understand the issues surrounding your commodity.
3rd paragraph: Elaborate on the significance of your commodity project, to both the people directly involved and to the wider world/environment. In other words, why does it matter?
4th paragraph: Lay out your work plan for the following weeks on the commodity project (i.e. articles you plan to read, data you plan to gather, or map you plan to produce to visualize the commodity chain). Provide a clear outline for your final paper.
Useful sources on how to write research proposals and research questions:
Last Updated on August 2, 2019 by EssayPro