Here is a short follow-up to my recent post about the “Information Literacy in the Workplace: Employer Expectations” article. I had opportunities last week to put one of Jason Sokoloff’s suggestions into practice: sometimes providing the desired data, rather than always teaching the researchers how to do the research.
(Well, really, I would have done the same thing anyway, given time constraints, but now I can better justify my decision when I find data for students, heh.)
Our Export Odyssey students were finishing up creating their final presentations, which involves integrating research and recommendations from four research reports into a 20 minute presentation. (Then the final presentation becomes a final written report with 75-100 exhibits attached.) One topic of the presentation is “Keys to Competitive Success”, in which the students present country-specific industry or market data and trends representative of their recommended customers and channel of distribution. One student team needed to learn about the size of the apparel manufacturing industry in the United Kingdom. The Datamonitor report for textiles in the UK partially covered apparel manufacturing, but the students wanted more. So from the “UK National Statistics” manufacturing page I downloaded a detailed statistical report and emailed to the team. On their own the students did a good job of pulling out the best numbers for their “Keys” slide, and they cited the data properly too.
Another Export Odyssey team needed help finding the 2011 U.S. exports of their product at the 10-digit harmonized level using the USITC Trade DataWeb. I demoed this database in class, but unlike with COMTRADE, the students only need to use USITC data this once. So I just ran the search for their HS code and target country and emailed them the results as an attached web page. That’s it.