Many undergraduate business degree programs require students to research and write about topics relevant to their program or career goals. When brainstorming for a topic, it always helps to focus on an area that you are passionate about. But if you're struggling to find a topic, a few suggestions follow.
Examine Entrepreneurship Trends
Researching entrepreneurial trends would likely be a relevant topic for undergraduate work. "The Wall Street Journal" reported in 2013 that a record-high 20 percent of Yale University's freshman expressed their desire to explore a career in entrepreneurship. The "Journal" said that traditional career paths don't offer young people the same job security and independence they once did. An intriguing research topic could examine the enrollment numbers of entrepreneurship courses at top business schools in relation to the number of startups being launched. Such research could also examine how startups influence students' desire to pursue an entrepreneurial career.
Compare Women- and Men-Owned Companies
Women are powerful players in business. "Forbes" reports that "the number of women-owned firms has grown by 56.6% since 2002 -- fully 47% higher than the 38.4% increase among all $10M+ firms regardless of gender." That said, another research topic could examine the data surrounding women-owned companies that grew beyond the million-dollar mark and analyze the factors leading to their success as compared with their male counterparts. The research could compare women-owned companies to male-owned firms to predict future business trends.
Discuss Holiday Advertising's Pros and Cons
A potential research topic could examine holiday advertising's impacts on consumer spending. A "Huffington Post" story, for example, discussed a 2013 Kmart Christmas commercial, broadcast more than three months before Christmas Day, that promoted the retail chain's layaway program. In an interview with "Ad Age" that was quoted in the "HuffPo" story, a National Retail Federation spokeswoman praised Kmart's decision to advertise early, saying the advertisement was "about helping [frugal or cash-strapped customers] with their holiday budgets." ABC News, however, reported that many consumers were irritated at the notion of holiday marketing as early as September. By examining previous years of companies' seasonal profits, students can determine the effects of those companies' early holiday marketing tactics.
Assess Corporations' Survival Prospects
A research topic could assess the likelihood of bankruptcy for mega brands. By researching the factors that lead to corporate struggles, students can find corporations that are showing symptoms of potential bankruptcy or that are undergoing major restructuring. Students could also analyze why a large company like Lehman Brothers wasn't given the same life preserver that was tossed to other financial institutions that nearly vanished during the 2008 financial crisis.
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