term paper for EC 460

Paper topic: “Should the _____ industry be considered to be competitive?”; or “How competitive is the _____ industry?”


Instructions for writing the two page term paper for EC 460

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Paper topic: “Should the _____ industry be considered to be competitive?”; or “How competitive is the _____ industry?”

A successful paper will have these parts:

Describe the industry.  Among the description, you may wish to name the main firms in the industry, (if a monopoly or oligopoly); the extent to which markets are local or national or international; the extent to which exports are an important part of industry decision making; the extent to which foreign firms affect the industry, either through domestic production or through imports; whether the industry is growing or shrinking.

The reader must know what your conclusion is about the industry.  It should be stated at the beginning of the paper, justified through the analysis of the paper, and restated at the end.

The reader must know how you are measuring competitiveness—remember that it can be measured at one of three levels. (See page 4 and Chapter 8 of the textbook)

Economic analysis of an industry should be based on data.  What data are you using to measure the competitiveness of an industry?  Explain the source of the data and whether you think it is reliable or not.

Explain why you think that the data that you have selected leads you to the conclusion about the competitiveness of your industry.  You may or may not wish to explain how different data, if you had it, might help you to confirm the conclusions in the paper.

You may or may not wish to say something about whether, based on your analysis, there is anything that might be done to improve the competitiveness of the industry.


The paper will be graded on: 1) the clarity of the writing, 2) the persuasiveness of the argumentation, and 3) consistency with principles of economic analysis outline in this course and in EC301.  You are NOT graded on whether your conclusion is in some sense right or wrong.  Two papers can earn a score of 100 that come to opposite conclusions about the same industry.




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