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This course guide has been designed as a starting point for the research necessary for your Business 322 research assignment. Remember to ask for help if you have trouble finding what you need.
About balanced scorecards and integrated/sustainability reporting
This assignment is not about finding a published balanced scorecard or other integrated report for a company/organisation. It's about understanding the requirements, function, and impact of such reports, then gathering information on specific organisations and their industries so that you can make some recommendations as to the feasibility and process of implementing integrated reporting in those organisations.
You'll be learning about integrated reports in your class. Here are some additional resources to consider if you'd like to learn more about the background and application of such reports:
- Recent articles on balanced scorecards and on integrated/sustainability reporting via our library catalogue and via Business Source Complete, including these articles by Kaplan and Norton, the inventors of the balanced scorecard system.
- Recent ebooks on the use of balanced scorecards in many contexts and on integrated/sustainability reporting in general.
Here are a few more samples of the ebooks we have on this and related topics...
The very first place you should check for information on your target organisations will be their own sites. Look especially for information about what they are doing, whether/how they are measuring it, what they are proud of, and what barriers they are encountering as they attempt to reach their goals. Be aware that not everything will be stated explicitly and publicly — sometimes you may need to make inferences from their actions and statements.
Try to view your organisations from different perspectives as you gather information from different parts of their sites:
- As an investor - Check their investor relations pages, including any reports, filings, press releases, etc.
- As an employee (current or potential) - Do they provide details about their benefits? Have they made efforts to increase diversity? Is employee safety and health a concern?
- As a supplier - Is information available on their policies and principles?
- As an activist - Is there information on both what they believe and what they do regarding issues such as governance, community engagement, and the environment?
- As a customer - How does this company describe itself and its products/services? Again, look beyond broad branding statements to find actual details on what they are doing, and on what they are aiming to achieve.
Articles in newspapers, magazines, and even business blogs are another place to learn about what an organisation is doing and saying, as well as what others are saying about it. You will often find critical perspectives or minor details that are not available directly from the organisation.
Thousands of news publications, including many that are business or industry focused. Includes the Wall Street Journal. See this post (and the video mentioned earlier) for details on how to use Factiva's "Expert Search" feature to quickly find articles on a company's environmental, governance, labour, or other issues and actions.
Fulltext articles and transcripts from many Canadian newspapers. Useful if you are focusing on Canadian firms.
Business Source Complete
Articles in academic and popular publications, including many industry news sources. Try searching for your company by changing the "Select a field" option next to the search box to "CO Company Entity," then limit your search results by date (sample search).
Company & industry analysis
Start with our Company Information research guide for resources that will help you analyse a company, especially:
Such reports tend to be high-level, but may still help you understand your companies. In some cases they may also supply a SWOT that you can build on with your own analysis.
Similarly for your research on the broader industry context of your target companies: Start with the many resources outlined in our Industry Surveys research guide, especially...
Also look for a relevant CFRA Industry Survey via our S&P Capital IQ database, as outlined in this blog post.
S&P Capital IQ (CapIQ)
Search for your target company, then browse the options on the left to find financial data, major customers, strategic alliances, company filings, and much more. See these blog posts for more details on S&P Capital IQ ("CapIQ") at SFU.
ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) data often plays a role in integrated reporting. Some companies may share their ESG data, especially if they have clear, publicly stated goals that are relevant to ESG topics. Also check any corporate social responsibility (CSR) or impact reports or web pages that the firm might have published (sample: Nike). In many cases, though, you will need to look elsewhere for detailed ESG data.
Here at SFU, our main ESG data source is the Thomson Reuters Eikon database. Eikon has very limited access during the pandemic, but because it has some unique value for this course, we've set up an alternative access method that applies only to BUS 322.
Please read and follow these steps carefully:
Use our Ask a Librarian services to get research help via email and chat.
You can also email me: Mark Bodnar (email@example.com). Please try to include as much of the following information in your question as you can. This will make it much easier for me to help you quickly.
What exactly you are looking for (saying that you need "everything about Boeing" is far too broad — saying that you need to know where to find "news about labour issues at Boeing" is better!); and
Where you have looked so far (have you tried the major sources listed in this guide such as Factiva, IBISWorld, and S&P Capital IQ?).
News from the BUEC Buzz blog
Follow the BUEC Buzz to keep on top of new resources available for business & economics research at SFU: RSS.