Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has emerged as a major aspect of business practices that need to be addressed by companies in an effective way. In Apple’s 2017 Progress Report Supplier Responsibility, it states: “Our suppliers employ millions of people around the world. The decisions we make can have a big impact on their lives and their communities. We have a great responsibility to protect the rights of all the people in our supply chain, and to do everything we can to preserve our planet’s fragile environment. That’s why we obsess over every detail of how we build our products. And it’s why we invest in education and training to provide opportunities and tools to help our suppliers’ employees today and in the future.” (source: Apple (2017) Supplier Responsibility, 2017 Progress Report. Available at: https://images.apple.com/supplierresponsibility/pdf/Apple-Progress-Report-2017.pdf) However, it is not so long ago that Apple had its fair share of social responsibility issues, especially labor law related violations in supplier factories in China. Apple made headlines in late January 2015 when it
reported the largest quarterly profit ever in corporate history: $18 billion. A record-breaking $74.6 billion quarterly revenue generated this profit, thanks in large part to the sale of 74.5 million iPhones during the same period. But for many hundreds of thousands of young Chinese working on Apple assembly lines, 2014 was not such a good year. Reports from China Labor Watch (CLW) and Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior (SACOM), and evidence gathered by researchers Jenny Chan, Mark Selden and Pun Ngai detail a string of labor law violations at several factories across China. It is that troubling that this evidence shows that many of the same problems reported to Apple in 2013 continued unabated through 2014. Conditions have in fact worsened at several sites. Source: Cole, N. and Chan, j. (2015) Despite claims of progress, labor and environmental
violations continue to plague Apple. Open Democracy, 19 February 2015. Available at:
First Assignment: Feasibility Study / Project Plan
35% of course mark
1,200 word assignment
Project Plan: Establishing the problem and a plan how to solve it. Generally, project plan precedes major development and project implementation. And it evaluates the project’s potential for success and is an
unbiased approach to provide information upon which decisions can be based. It should comprise the following elements:
Project overview. 25 marks.
– The project proposal begins with an overview, which is the summary of the project.
– The project overview should tie the entire proposal together and often times writing it last works much better to accomplish this.
– The overview is what creates an impression in the mind of the reader, so it is important that it is written professionally and strongly.
Statement of the problem. 30 marks.
– This section of the proposal begins discussing the problem that is being solved through the project. You can either use a real life ethical problem Apple is facing, or ‘invent’ a problem relating to Apple’s push towards greater corporate social responsibility (see for example: https://images.apple.com/environment/pdf/Apple_Environmental_R
– Use this section to also prove that this project is definitely needed and therefore should be done.
– Outline the scope of the project.
Define and write the project goals and objectives. 25 marks. – Create goals that are attainable and objectives that are measurable.
– This should include a timeline and milestones throughout the life of
Methodology: 20 marks.
– In this section you should include the methods and ways in conducting the research for the final coursework, and explain and justify the method you choose.
Final Project / Research paper: Application of governance and ethical
theories to the real world business
65% of course mark
3,000 word assignment
The purpose of the final assignment is to apply the concepts and techniques learned throughout the Governance and Ethics program and critically engage with the related materials and literature in the field. Also, you are expected to provide critical analyses regarding the implications of ethical views and
theories. Your grade on this assignment will be based on the quality of your analysis
and the way you apply existing theories about governance and ethics on the Apple case study. Students should be able to discuss and explain the fundamental theories and views of governance and ethical theories relating
to business, apply them to the case of Apple and use relevant background research, supported by examples, citation and a bibliography in Harvard format. The final assignment should be 3,000 words in length. (Word length does not include table of contents, appendices or exhibits).
The final assignment should include the following elements:
– Description and evaluation of the organisation culture and a definition
of the company framework and its objectives relating to governance
and ethics. 25 marks.
– Explanation and evaluation of the company’s socially responsible
activities. 30 marks.
– Explanation of the ethical perspective of corporate entity that Apple
included in its corporate responsibility report. 30 marks.
– Explanation and justification on why Apple puts so much emphasis on
environmental responsibility. 15 marks.
Guidelines Please read all questions and information provided carefully. Answer should
be made in appropriate length keeping in view the requirement of each
question and total word counts allowed.
In addition, your assignment should demonstrate the following qualities:
A critical appreciation of relevant literature and its use to support argument,
substantiate calculations and other aspects of the assignment.
Taking ownership of the content, being prepared to debate and argue a
personal position, and providing evidence of evaluative skills. A submission
made up of extracts from published sources that is descriptive or simply just
theoretical regurgitation is not acceptable. Your submission must have
interpretation and consideration of the challenges and issues of taking theory
Logical flow of ideas and treatment; appropriate selection of real world
factors related to the companies under scrutiny.
Evidence of additional personal research, and the ability to analyse material
from a variety of appropriate relevant perspectives.
Presentation, structure, appropriateness of methodology, breaking into
section headings/subheadings, tidiness.
Marks will be awarded for proper referencing and originality of work. Also
note that plagiarism is a serious offence and your submission will be
Your report must be handed in electronically no later than given date of
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