You are on page 1of 6

Corporations and Politics BA 4307-001 Fall 2005 Marilyn R. Kaplan, Ph.D. 972-883-2742 www.utdallas.

edu/~mkaplan Email through WebCT ONLY Office SOM4.216 Hours: Monday/Wednesday 10-11, before or after class, or by appointment

The business world and the political world are intertwined. Each has the power to affect the other to some degree. In this class we will be discussing the power each sector has over the other as well as the amplitude, intensity, and possibility of the consequences of business-political engagements. We will examine historical as well as current political events and relate them to the business world through the use of critical thinking skills. We will also attempt to predict future government, social, and corporate actions. Required reading: 1. 2. 3. Steiner and Steiner, Business, Government, and Society, McGraw Hill, 11th edition. Browne & Keeley, Asking the Right Questions, Prentice Hall, 2003. MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers

Daily newspapers and business periodicals - Wall Street Journal suggested. Grading Policy: Term Paper Project Exam Homework Case Discussion Participation

25% 25% 25% 15% 10% 100%

A+: 97 and up; A: 94-96; B+: 87-89; B: 84-86; C+: 77-79; C: 74-76; D+: 67-69; D: 64-66; F: Below 60%

A-: 90-93 B-: 80-83 C-: 70-73 D-: 60-63

Homework Your weekly homework assignment is to bring in a current event clipping from a daily newspaper (New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Dallas Morning News, etc.), a business periodical (Business Week, Fortune, etc.) or the internet that directly relates to the topic of the week, for example: foreign trade, worker safety, or pollution. Please attach your news story to another sheet of paper that includes the following: 1. Explaining why this news item is important to business 2. How does it relate to the topic/readings assigned for the week 3. Criticize the way the article is written by applying the questions of critical thinking Late homework will not be accepted. Homework is due every week except when noted in the schedule.

Term Paper Project Part 1: Choose an industry or firm that is of particular interest to you and that is also in the news (examples are tobacco, dietary supplements, Firestone) which represents a business/society or business/government problem. To get topic approval, you must write a one-page paper explaining what your topic encompasses and how it is related to the course. Topics will be approved on a first come, first served basis . A list of potential topics is available on my website. Topics related to cases in the textbook may not be used. Ø Due: NO LATER THAN 1/30, 12:30pm Ø 10% of the total project points Ø One page – Upload through WebCT - Assignments Part 2: : Take that industry or firm research it and write up the details of the impact of regulations or lawsuits on the industry and the impact of the industry on government and society both in the past and currently. Assume that you are writing a case study to add to our textbook. Present the facts and only the facts: this is not the time for opinion. This is the research portion of the project. Ø Part 2 Requirements: o State the problem/Facts only § Who What When Where § Give some historical background o Describe the situation § What events are occurring socially? § What events are occurring economically? § What events are occurring politically, etc? o Use timelines, maps, graphs if necessary to illustrate your case Ø Due: NO LATER THAN 2/20, 12:30pm Ø 30% of total project points Ø Approximately 3-5 pages Ø Turn in hard copy PLUS Upload through

Part 3: Take the case that you produced in Part 1 and analyze it. Now is the time for your opinions – not research! Pretend that you are the CEO. Identify the stakeholders, threats and opportunities in the social & political environment. What actions should be taken by the firm? If you were CEO, what decisions would you make? Support your recommendations. Ø Part 3 Requirements: o Identify the stakeholders § Who are they? § How important are they to this problem? o SWOT analysis § Identify the strengths and weaknesses of the firm/industry. § What opportunities are available to the firm in the environment? § What threats await the firm in the environment? o List possible alternative strategies § Rank the alternatives or assign probabilities § Which of these strategies do you recommend and why? o Be sure to write a strong conclusion – case analysis is based on a well-supported argument! Ø Due: NO LATER THAN 3/27, 12:30pm Ø 60% of total project points Ø Approximately 7-10 pages Ø Turn in hard copy PLUS upload through


You must follow the requirements. This assignment involves the ANALYSIS PROCESS. For each part you will be turning in a hard copy as well as uploading to All three parts are required. Late papers will not be accepted. Use the MLA Handbook and follow the rules of format for papers regarding spacing, headers, references, citations, etc. Ø You must list references – I expect you to go to the library for sources. The Internet may be used but only along with other sources. If your paper has only Internet sources, it is an automatic zero! Ø Word processing programs have spelling and grammar checking capabilities – use them! Scholastic Dishonesty

Scholastic dishonesty will not be tolerated. Students who violate the University of Texas at Dallas’ rules on scholastic dishonesty will be subject to disciplinary penalties, including the possibility of failure in the course and/or dismissal from the University. I will strictly enforce the University’s policies. This policy applies to all assignments, whether papers, homework, oral presentations, tests, etc. In order to monitor possible plagiarism, all term papers will be uploaded by the students to a website that uses special software. When you have completed your paper you must upload it to this site. 1. Term paper upload: go to 2. Click on LOG IN. 3. Click on New User. Enter your email address and a password of your choice. 4. Your class name is BA4307001S06, class id is ' 1428116 ' and the enrollment password is '001S06'. 5. Follow the directions for uploading the body of your paper. 6. You will receive confirmation of the upload. 7. Papers will not be graded until originality reports have been checked. 8. If there are any problems, you will receive an email from me.

Each student in this course is expected to exercise independent scholarly thought, expression and aptitude. This addendum to the course syllabus is provided to assist you in developing and maintaining academic integrity while seeking scholastic success. General Comments: • All academic exercises (including assignments, essays, and reports, examinations, etc.) require individual, independent work. There is no group project in this course. • Be sure your name and section number is on your paper. • Complete and turn in academic exercises on time and in the required format (hardcopy, electronic, etc.). • Retain confirmation of document delivery if submitted electronically. • Retain all research notes and drafts until the project or assignment has been graded. • Obtain written authorization from your instructor prior to submitting a portion of academic work previously submitted for any academic exercise. (This includes an individual or group project submitted for another course or at another school.) Essays and Significant Papers: Be prepared • To present periodic drafts of work in process • To correctly and completely reference all sources of information using the citation format prescribed • To turn your completed assignment in timely and in the prescribed manner (electronic, hardcopy, etc.) Examinations: Be prepared

• • • • • • • •

To leave all personal belonging at the front of the room or other designated location (this includes cell phones, turned off of course, and beverage containers) To present your UTD Comet Card To remove your cap or hat To remove the batteries from any electronic device (e.g. calculator) To exchange blue books or bring them early as required To change seating To sign out when exiting the testing room To be escorted for lavatory use

All episodes of suspected scholastic dishonesty will be reported according to University policy. Students who violate University rules on scholastic dishonesty are subject to disciplinary penalties, including the possibility of failure in the course and/or dismissal from the University. Since such dishonesty harms the individual, all students and the University, policies on scholastic dishonesty will be strictly enforced. Penalties that may be assessed for scholastic dishonesty may be reviewed in Subchapter D. Penalties at

Case Discussions Each week, students will be called on randomly to discuss the case assigned for the week. Some case discussions will be role play activities, others will be debates. If you are not present when your name is called or if you do not participate in the discussion, you will receive a zero for this portion of the grade.

Exam The final exam will consist of 10 multi-part essay questions. The questions are primarily from the lectures and discussions, but you must be able to support your answers with definitions and details from the readings. I will provide blue books, please bring only pens and pencils to the exam.

Class Participation The class participation component means that you must come to class prepared to discuss the assigned reading and the clipping you brought as homework. I must be able to know your name and your level of participation for you to receive participation credit. I will call on people at random if necessary to make sure that the quiet students have a chance. Attendance is required in this course. Students who attend all class sessions and participate always perform better on the exam and the term paper. Therefore, exclusive of the participation grade, you are allowed 2 excused absences. After that, each absence results in a reduction of 5 points from your total grade. Email U.T. Dallas provides each student with a free email account that is to be used in communication with university personnel. The Department of Information Resources at U.T. Dallas provides a method for students to forward their U.T. Dallas mail to other accounts. Students may go to the following URL to establish or maintain their official U.T. Dallas computer account: Please email through WebCT as I will not reply to non-UTD email addresses. Classroom Rules You are required to attend class. Respect your fellow students – turn off cell phones, no talking amongst yourselves, try to be on time. This course is discussion driven, so please allow everyone a chance to speak and be heard. All power point slides are available on WebCT. No late assignments! Unclaimed papers will be retained for one year.

Extra Credit Paper Presentation There will be a limited number of optional extra credit presentations available. On 5/1, the class period will be devoted to student presentations. You will present your findings and recommendations from your term paper to share with the class. Your presentation is to last NO MORE THAN 10 MINUTES – PLEASE REHEARSE. I will have a sign-up sheet available.

Date 1/9 1/23 1/23 1/30 1/30 2/6 2/13

Topic Introduction Business Environment

Steiner/Steiner Chapters 1 - 14 Chapters 1 & 2

Browne & Keeley

Case Assignment

FIRST HOMEWORK DUE Corporate Social Responsibility Chapter 3-6 KFC

LAST DAY TO TURN IN TERM PAPER PART 1 Ethics Business/Government Relationships Chapters 7 & 8 Chapters 9 & 10 Martha Stewart Westar

2/20 2/20 2/27 3/13 3/20

Fiscal Policy

No Reading

Federal Budget

TERM PAPER PART 2 DUE – NO OTHER HOMEWORK DUE THIS WEEK Politics and regulation Global Issues Consumerism Chapter 11 Chapters 12 & 13 Chapter 16 Microsoft WTO Advertising Alcohol

3/27 3/27 4/3 4/10 4/17 4/24 5/1

Movie TERM PAPER PART 3 DUE- NO OTHER HOMEWORK THIS WEEK Environmental Politics The Workplace and Civil Rights Corporate Governance Exam Extra Credit Presentations Chapters 14 & 15 Chapters 17 & 18 Chapter 19 Owls & Loggers Drug Testing Cedant

The reading assignment schedule is subject to change.