the Practical Exercises

Task 1: Using one source from a relatively easy textbook
Level of student : 6.0/6.5 on IELTS
Read the following extract to answer this question. Do this without copying the
exact words or changing the original meaning of the extract. Make sure that
you quote and reference the extract correctly.
According to this extract:
What is the difference between neo-classical and Keynesian
Extract 1
Classical and neo-classical economists believe in the supremacy of
market forces. They claim that the market is self-regulating , and will
ensure that all goods are produced at the right price, leaving no room
for government intervention. (How many classical economists does it
take to change a light bulb? None - if the light bulb had needed
changing, the market would have done it already).
Keynesian economists believe the opposite. They think governments
should intervene in an economy, increasing spending in times of
trouble and reducing it in times of wealth. Such counter-cyclical
demand management will smooth business cycles and ensure
maximum employment. (So, how many Keynesian economists does it
take to change a light bulb? All of them, because that will generate
employment and more consumption, so the economy will grow.)
(page 30)
Model Answer
According to Scott (2001), the fundamental difference between the
two types of economist is in the role they think the government
should take in the economy. Classical and neo-classical
economists think that the government need not intervene because
the market will regulate itself, whereas the Keynesian economists
believe the government should take an active part in trying to help
the economy.
Scott, J (2001) ‘Living Economy’ Reuters Pearson Education UK
Task 2: Using one source from a journal article, with naturally occurring
English level of student – 6.5 and above including near-native speaker
Read Text A to answer the following question:
To what extent is corporate social engagement primarily about a new
commitment to philanthropy?
Answer the question in your own words, but without changing the meaning of the
text, making sure that you reference the sources correctly. Details of the source of
the text are given below.
Text A : The reasons behind corporate social engagement
While corporations in the United States have long been engaged in philanthropic activity, the level of
philanthropic commitments from the corporate sector has risen steadily since the middle of the 20th
century and most rapidly since the 1970s (Useem and Kutner, 1986; Useem, 1993). 6 In 2000, the
Fortune 100 group alone donated over $2 billion in cash gifts. 7 Corporate philanthropic giving to
support local organizations is a key feature of the flow of resources that has redefined the funding and
provision of public goods in the United States.
Yet, corporate social engagement is not only about philanthropy. Beginning in the mid-1990s, a
number of corporate scandals began to place the question of the corporation's responsibility to society
in graphic relief. Corporations like Royal/Dutch Shell became associated with issues of environmental
degradation and human rights abuses through events like the sinking of the Brent Spar and the
Nigerian government's execution of Ken Saro-Wiwa; Shell launched an entirely new organizational
design that would factor in social accountability (Paine, 2004).
6 Overall,
for the last quarter century, there has been a significant rise in philanthropic activity from a
number of different sectors of the economy, with philanthropic activity increasing by over 1200%
overall and nearly 400% in inflation-adjusted dollars since 1975. Private foundations have been the
most significant force in this distribution of resources - more than doubling in number since 1975 however, corporate philanthropic giving has also risen significantly during this time period as well
(Foundation Yearbook, 2003).
7 The Chronicle of Philanthropy 13(19), 26 July 2001.
Model Answer
To what extent is corporate social engagement primarily about a new commitment to philanthropy?
Corporate interest in charitable donation is not a new phenomenon, although it has undoubtedly
increased since the 1970’s, as Fortune 100’s donations in 2000 show (Foundation Yearbook 2003,
cited in Guthrie, Durand 2008). However, according to Guthrie and Durand (2008) philanthropy is by
no means the only motivation for corporate social engagement, with the scandals involving large
corporations such as Shell in the 1990’s being significant in alerting companies to its importance.
Guthrie, D. and Durand, R. 2008. Social issues in the study of management.
European Management Review [online]. 5(3), [Accessed 10 November 2009],
pp.137-149. Available from:
Task 3: Using four sources, including journal articles and a textbook, to
answer a question.
English level of student – 6.5 or above, including native speakers.
To what extent do you agree with the view that strategic philanthropy is
simply a way to benefit the company which fails to help the community?
Step 1
Analyse the question –
What does the question want you to write about?
What do you think about this issue?
Step 2
Read each extract.
What are the arguments?
Which source gives you information?
How are the sources relevant to the question?
How will they help you answer it?
Step 3
Write a plan – you should be answering these questions:
What is strategic philanthropy?
How does strategic philanthropy benefit the company? Is it only of benefit to
the company?
How does it help/not help the community?
Step 4
Write the essay
Step 5
Write the list of references, using the information provided
Model answer
Strategic philanthropy differs from traditional benevolent philanthropy in that it
benefits both the company and the community. It uses the company’s resources ‘to
address key stakeholders’ interests and to achieve both organisational and social
benefits’ (Thorne, Ferrell and Ferrell, 2008, p.294)
It could be argued that an organisation might serve its own best interests by this kind
of philanthropy more than those of the community. Miller (2008) argues that a
corporation could try to enhance its own reputation and legitimacy by charitable
donations, but at the same time ignore union rights. Guthrie and Durant (2008)
present a similarly negative view of strategic philanthropy by suggesting that
companies often focus on high-profile support for good causes overseas, to the
detriment of local issues. ExxonMobil’s contributions report of 2003 (cited in Guthrie
and Durand, 2008) certainly backs this argument by showing that local issues
receive less financial support. Guthrie and Durand (2008) also suggest that
ExxonMobil focuses on global environmental issues that will enhance its reputation,
but does not promote sustainable development.
However, it cannot be denied that strategic philanthropy of this kind is valuable to the
community, even it is of benefit to the company at the same time. The good causes
which are supported are legitimate and it is to be hoped, as Guthrie and Durand
(2008) suggest, that corporations apply the same principles wherever they operate in
the world. Thus it would be true to say that strategic philanthropy benefits both the
company and the community, although the system no doubt needs to kept under
close public scrutiny to ensure that it is not being abused.
Guthrie, D. and Durand, R. (2008).Social issues in the study of management.
European Management Review [online]. 5(3) [Accessed 10 November 2009],
pp.137-149 Available from:
Miller, J (2008) The ongoing legitimacy project: Corporate philanthropy as protective
strategy. European Management Review [Online] 5(3) [Accessed 16 November]
pp.151-195 Available from
Thorne,D.M, Ferrell, O.C. and Ferrell, L. (2008) Business and Society: A Strategic
Approach to Social Responsibility 3rd edition Houghton Mifflin Company USA