(RES 800) Business research assignmentassessing the impacts and consequences of energy increase in the food supply chain
Task: Frame a research question in your business research assignmentand provide an argument about why they chose that research method/s and how the data will be analyzed. Analyze ethical issues and considerations and their relevance in applied business research
1. Research objectiveof the business research assignment
The key objectives of the business research assignmentare:
To analyse the necessity of using increased energy in the food supply chain
To determine the impact of energy increase on the food supply chain
To evaluate the key consequences related to the energy increase in the food supply chain
2. Research questionof the business research assignment
Significant questions of the business research assignmentare:
What is the necessity of increasing the rate of energy usage in the food supply chain
What is the impact of increased energy on the food supply chain
What consequences do arrive due to the energy increase in the food supply chain
3. Research problem of the business research assignment
Access to adequate, safe, and nutritious food that meets the dietary needs and food preferences of one's community at all times, regardless of economic circumstances, is a necessary condition for food security. However, a more sustainable and better long-term solution would be to take the necessary steps to ensure the produce reaches the market and the farmer actually has a stable income. To this end, cold chain-related issues could be identified in the business research assignmentand action plans could be developed to eliminate cold chain breaks through international development programs working with local authorities and farmers.
4. Summary of literature review
It has been noticed in the business research assignmentthat energy consumption in the food supply chain is increasing day by day. As per the report, the American food supply industry uses mostly non-renewable energy sources and nearly 19% of the use of fossil fuels is made in the USA (Sustainability.emory.edu, 2022). Thereafter, nearly 7.3 units of fossil energy are used to produce 1 unit of food energy in the United States (Sustainability.emory.edu, 2022). Energy has become a significant factor in food supply chain management as per the business research assignmentwhich is generated through the high level of food waste and food processing. In terms of the food supply chain process, a high level of energy is derived from the refrigeration of food, food chilling, packaging, and food processing (Hasegawa et al., 2018). Therefore, the use of Renewable energy has become enhanced nowadays to manage the food supply chain process which is impressive in reducing carbon footprint. However, a high range of energy consumption in the food industry causes thermal pollution, climate change, air pollution, solid waste disposal, and water pollution (Lourenço, Moldão-Martins, & Alves, 2019).
Figure 1: Energy usage during food production
(Source: Sustainability.emory.edu, 2022)
Thereafter, the increasing rate of high range of energy in the food supply chain industry may cause air pollution due to excessive rate of emission (Hilborn et al., 2018). Hence, Food processing is known as one of the most energy-consuming stages as per the business research assignment. Using clear energy in the food supply chain process may have a positive impact to enhance affordability, and safe and secure food production systems through the reduction of carbon footprint. Hence, the author Lourenço, Moldão-Martins, & Alves, (2019) illustrated that a high rate of energy usage in the food supply chain may create negative consequences, environmental impact, social impact, and health impact. Moreover, it can be illustrated in the business research assignmentthat the right rate of energy in the food supply chain industry has both a positive and negative impact.
5. Research Design of the business research assignment
A research design provides a better plan through which the research can proceed on a proper track. Thereafter, the present business research assignmenthas selected an exploratory research design to determine the impact of high levels of energy usage in the food supply industry. Therefore, it provides a better explanation of the research topic which remains operative enough to develop future-based observations (Thomas & Lawal, 2020).
The business research assignment, including business research, should be rooted in ethics, and there is no exception to this rule. For a study to be considered ethical, the researcher conducting it must maintain the highest degree of objectivity possible. Interpretativism will be utilised as a research philosophy going forward. It is possible for researchers using the inductive research method to conduct pattern analysis and theory development, which is one of the method's many advantages. As a result, the researcher of the business research assignmenthas utilised this methodology. To get a better idea of the effects of high energy, an interview with 15 people working in the food supply industry, including 10 employees and 5 managers, will be carried out. On the other hand, the secondary platform often does not provide adequate control over the information that has been gathered because it has access to a wide variety of open and publicly accessible data.
A research onion is effective to determine every stage of the research through which its goals can be achieved easily (Melnikovas, 2018).
Figure 2: Research onion
(Source: Melnikovas, 2018)
5.1. Research philosophy
Research philosophy is effective enough to make explicit assumptions about the research which is helpful to derive a proper research purpose. The present business research assignmenthas selected interpretivism research philosophy to determine the impact and consequences of increased usage of energy in the food supply chain process. Thereafter, the business research assignmenthas not selected the positivism philosophy as it tends to derive information from invalid sources. Moreover, the interpretivism research philosophy becomes effective enough as it helps to gather information from authentic sources through which better research outcomes can be derived. Hence, the impacts and consequences of a high range of energy consumption in the food supply industry have been derived through the use of such philosophical implantation (Alharahsheh& Pius, 2020). Therefore, the research philosophy of the business research assignmentfocuses on the social world which becomes helpful to understand the impacts of the high range of energy used in the food supply chain in the social world.
5.2. Research Approach
An implementation of a research approach remains effective to bring legitimacy and derive sound findings for the research. The present business research assignmenthas used an Inductive research approach to determine the consequences of high energy consumption in the food supply chain process. As per the point of view of Woiceshyn&Daellenbach, (2018), such a research approach provides a detailed plan for the entire process through which gaining research objectives becomes smooth and manageable. However, the business research assignmenthas not used a deductive research approach as it may not be so appropriate to derive a proper presentation of the research.
5.3. Methodological choice
It is necessary to implement a better methodological choice of research to derive the consequences of high energy generation from the food supply chain process. Therefore, a qualitative data analysis method has been used in the business research assignmentto gain the research objectives. Such data analysis methods help to save the time of the research, detect better information, and to manage proper tasks (Maher et al., 2018). However, the quantitative data analysis method has not been used in the present study as it proves a lower detailed picture of research through which deriving a proper conclusion becomes difficult enough.
5.4. Research Strategy
A research strategy provides an overall plan for the research through which planning of the research, excitement, and monitoring of the research can be effectively performed (Gable, 2020). Hence, qualitative research in the business research assignmenthelps to gather information related to the impact of high energy in the food supply chain industry. Such a strategy helps to develop proper insight into the research objectives and helps to find a better research outcome (Snyder, 2019). Moreover, through a proper research strategy time, management, operational management, information gathering, and data analysis can be made.
5.5. Time horizon
A proper time horizon is effective to determine the estimated time and planning to complete the entire project. The entire business research assignmentis going to take ten weeks, among them initial three weeks are used to make research planning. Then the literature review took two to four weeks to be completed. Hence, the primary data collection took place in the seventh week and the final submission of the work was done in the last or tenth week. [Refer to appendix 1]
5.6. Data collection method
The primary data collection method has been used in the research to determine the consequences of high energy in the food supply industry. Therefore, such a data collection method remains effective to derive authentic data from direct sources on the high energy of food supply (Dimitrovski, Lekovi, &uraevi, 2022). However, the business research assignmenthas not used secondary data collection as it may provide false and outdated information based on research objectives. As stated by Dimitrovski, Lekovi, &uraevi, (2022), primary data collection provides more accurate information on the research objectives. It provides up to date information and helps to manage control over the collected data.
5.7.1. Tools used in the business research assignment
Key tools that are used to collect primary qualitative data on the high energy of the food supply industry are:
An interview has been conducted in the business research assignment with 10 workers and 5 managers from the food supply industry to determine the impact of high energy. It helps to gather deeper and more detailed information related to the research objectives through which proper outcome has been derived (Ho et al., 2022). A semi-structured format of the interview has been conducted so that participants are allowed to express their thoughts on the objectives and provide detailed information in it.
188.8.131.52. Participant observation
Participants' observation is another effective tool to gather information for the research (Pandey & Pandey, 2021). It has become effective to focus on the nature of work, working environment, and management process of the food supply chain industry. It has become effective to gather a proper insight into how the energy from the food supply industry is increasing day to day.
The key targeted population of the business research assignmentis the managers and the workers from the food supply chain industry. It has become effective to determine and gather information related to consequences as well as impacts of high energy in the food supply industry.
5.9. Sampling technique
A non-probability sampling technique has been used in the business research assignmentto gather primary, qualitative information from the interview process. As stated by Skelton et al., (2020), such a sampling technique is effective to become more subjective and gather authentic information for the research.
5.10. Sample size
Total of 10 workers and 5 managers from the food supply industry have been selected for the business research assignmentto complete the entire data collection process through an interview.
5.11. Ethical issues and consideration
Among the most crucial aspects of the business research assignmentis the consideration of ethical issues. Time, money, accessibility, and the right way to implement ethical considerations have always presented difficulties in the realm of research. These factors should be taken into account at all stages of the research, not just at the beginning or end. Respondents' participation should be based on their informed consent. Researchers of the business research assignmentmust ensure that participants are given enough data and reassurances regarding the study before they agree to participate, as per the principle of informed consent.
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Sustainability.emory.edu, (2022). Energy and food production. https://sustainability.emory.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/InfoSheet-Energy26FoodProduction.pdf Thomas, O. O., & Lawal, O. R. (2020). Exploratory Research Design in Management Sciences: An X-Ray of Literature. Annals of the University Dunarea de Jos of Galati: Fascicle: I, Economics & Applied Informatics, 26(2).
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