Economics exercise (excel spreadsheet, plus a written report)

| January 10, 2016

200.00
20.00
End Week 9 (15th Jan, 2016)
Submit:
A report (pdf) plus excel spreadsheet. The report is to be no longer than ~2000 words (penalties will be applied if exceeded by more than 20%). pdf via Moodle, using filename as SURNAME_ENG2002_A2.pdf xlsx via Moodle, using filename as SURNAME_ENG2002_A2.xlsx
Format:
Type using 12 font size, arial or times new roman font, single line spaced. Structure sentences into paragraphs, leaving a single blank line between paragraphs. Use your excel spreadsheet to generate graphs which explain the analysis that you have undertaken. Organise your report into sections with headings and sub-headings, and then auto generate a table of contents (TOC) using your report headings. Describe all findings from your excel spreadsheet analysis in your report, as your excel spreadsheet will be looked at only briefly.
References:
Include a single reference list at the end of the report. Try to source some refereed journal (i.e. non-internet) high quality references. Use in-text citation of your references. The Harvard system of referencing must be used. Do not use too many references, just cite the most important/ pertinent ones.
Extension policy:
No extension allowed except in extenuating circumstances – see Course Specification.
Warning about plagiarism
You will be severely penalised if it is found that you have copied verbatim from the work of other authors, including from web sites. You may quote the work of others but quotations should be used sparingly. For each question, quotations should amount to no more than 5 per cent of the specified word limit for that question, and each quotation must be cited correctly. Plagiarism detection software may be used to check your assignment. To answer the assignment questions you are expected to consult your study package and other sources. However, the work you submit as your own work has to be in your own words. You are encouraged to discuss the concepts covered in the assignment questions with your classmates and others, but you should not release your written responses to the questions to anyone except the University. Students submitting a section or sections of assignment work which is the same as other students’ work will be severely penalised. Further information about plagiarism can be found on the University website.
Assignment Two Task – spreadsheet and report (word limit: 2000) (200 marks)
This assignment is relevant to all of the course objectives (as follows):
1. Converse proficiently upon general knowledge and current affairs of the day
2. Appreciate the history of technology and associated benefits to human society
3. Understand the basic concepts behind environmental sustainability
4. Understand the basic concepts behind environmental impact assessment
5. Understand the role of politics, politicians, power and government
6. Acquire a basic knowledge of economics and profitability forecasting, and be able to perform a simple Net Present Value (NPV) exercise using Excel spreadsheet
7. Appreciate the relevance of social structures and values
8. Suggest strategies for working effectively in multi-cultural environments
9. Acquire a basic knowledge of the International legal system
10. Appreciate the basic philosophies behind modern engineering management
TASK – Economic analysis (using NPV) of marine shrimp farming in Bangladesh, or your suggested alternative industry
1. Use the internet and other sources to research and evaluate historical and present economics associated with the marine shrimp farming in Bangladesh. Attempt to define how important the industry is presently (or will be) to the Bangladeshi economy.
2. Imagine that you are the chief engineer working for a large international firm in Bangladesh, and that the government of Bangladesh has asked your best advice. What alternative forms of agriculture/industry it might be appropriate for Bangladesh to invest into? What is the likely level of investment required? What employment would be provided and what would be the likely ‘flow-on-benefits’ from your chosen alternative enterprise?
3. Set up an excel spreadsheet similar to the example provided to you on ENG2002 study desk, named ‘NPVCalc’. You are welcome to use this provided spreadsheet, as a ‘starter’ to the one that you are going to develop and refine for your own purposes. Feel free to ‘play around’ i.e., experiment. Make adjustments and improvements to the spreadsheet, to suit your own requirements and arguments which you want to present in your report. The idea is to set up your spreadsheet to calculate, using the Net Present Value (NPV) economic calculation method, the future profitability of the industry, based on the assumed market profitability of your chosen path forward. You may choose to recommend government financial assistance (i.e. grants), with setting up your alternative new industry.
4. Summarise the finding of your economic analysis in a report no longer than 2000 words, or about ten pages in length including diagrams (including graphs).
Some additional guidance
? As a way of best demonstrating your predicted range of future profitabilities, for your chosen alternative industry, it is recommended that you run your NPV simulations (graphical analysis) using interest rates on borrowed money (or discount rate if you prefer) scenarios of 3,6,9,12,15 and 18%. You should be able to plot all six curves on the one graph. This should cover all eventualities and will cover you, in case there is a sudden collapse in economic conditions, which normally brings about high inflation rates, and therefore high interest rates on any borrowed money.
? If the cost of borrowing money is added to all the other business costs, eg. asset and equipment depreciation, maintenance costs, labour costs, government taxation, cost of environmental rehabilitation, and falling future commodity price due to competing industries, then this can be all aggregated together to produce what is known in economics as the ‘discount rate’. Based upon historical performance data, this is what banks and lending institutions use to assess risk, and it is how they calculate what interest rate to charge against money lent to the various different industries.
? Of course you have to research, study and make many assumptions (educated guesses) with this type of economic analysis, e.g., future market/commodity prices, growth/stagnation in population and other parts of the economy. Clearly state your assumptions in the methodology section to your report
MARKING CRITERIA
A marking rubric will be used to provide you with feedback when your assignment is marked. It will be based upon:-
1) Quality/organisation of findings, as written and produced in the report (20%)
2) Quality/organisation of excel spreadsheet based future profitability analysis (20%)
3) Quality, description and interpretation of graphs, as produced in the report (20%)
4) Clear statement of assumptions made in your analysis (20%)
5) Level/quality of background research undertaken (20%)

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