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ECO 201 Final Project Guidelines and Rubric


The final project for this course is the creation of a research paper. Every day, millions of economic choices are made by people—from what brand of soap to buy

to how many employees to hire for a factory. Microeconomics provides us with the tools, models, and concepts to better understand individual choices in the marketplace and how resource allocation is determined at the micro level. The decisions made by individuals and households impact the market and influence decisions made by firms. Firms use these tools as a way to determine pricing, output, and profit maximization. As a student of economics, you can use the microeconomic principles to gain an understanding of how firms and individuals make decisions and also to make your own conclusions about actions we can take to improve those decision Amazon.com. The Amazon.com has hired you to advise it on how it can ensure its future success as a company in its current market. To do this, you will write a 7–9-page research paper analyzing market and business data to explain how the core microeconomic principles impact the sustainability of the firm and what actions it can take to ensure success.

The project is divided into three milestones, which will be submitted at various points throughout the course to scaffold learning and ensure quality final submissions. These milestones will be submitted in Modules Two, Four, and Five. The final submission will occur in Module Seven.

In this assignment, you will demonstrate your mastery of the following course outcomes:

  • · Apply microeconomic models to real-world situations for informing effective business decisions
  • · Analyze business and market data using microeconomic tools for their impact on business sustainability
  • · Evaluate the structure of various markets for informing effective decision-making strategies
  • · Assess the behavior and decisions of individuals and firms for their relation to the microeconomic framework


You will work with your instructor to choose a firm (Amazon.com )for which you can find reliable data and information, both at the firm level and the industry level. The firm you select must be a publicly traded company, must operate in the U.S. market, and must currently be in business. You will need instructor approval before continuing on with your research paper in order to ensure you have met the necessary requirements. Publicly traded companies file reports with a great deal of data that you will find useful for your analysis. Once you have selected a firm for your case study (chosen firm is Amazon.com), you will gather information and data relevant to Amazon.com and its industry and use the core microeconomic principles you have learned in class to analyze the information and make a recommendation for Amazon.com. You will compose a 7–9-page research paper in which you will analyze the market and business data to explain how the core microeconomic principles impact the sustainability of Amazon.com, and your recommendation will suggest the actions the they can take to ensure success.

Specifically the following critical elements must be addressed:

  1. IntroductionWork with your instructor to choose a firm (my firm is Amazon.com)that matches the following criteria: a publicly traded company operating in the U.S. market that is currently in business.
  1. a) Outline the purpose of this paper and how it will inform your conclusion.
  2. b) Summarize the history of Amazon.com, and provide an overview for what Amazon does and what goods/services it sells.
  1. Explore the supply and demand conditions for Amazon’s product.
  1. a) Evaluate trends in demand over time, and explain Amazon’s impact on the industry and thei company. You should consider including annual sales figures for the product your Amazons sells.
  2. b) Analyze information and data related to the demand and supply for your firm’s product(s) to support your recommendation for the firm’s actions. Remember to include a graphical representation of the data and information used in your analysis.
  1. Examine the price elasticity of demand for the product(s) that Amazon sells.
    1. a)  Analyze the available data and information, such as pricing and the availability of substitutes, and justify how you determine the price elasticity of demand for Amazons product.
    2. b)  Explain the factors that affect consumer responsiveness to price changes for this product, using the concept of price elasticity of demand as your guide.
    3. c)  Assess how the price elasticity of demand impacts Amazons pricing decisions and revenue growth.
  2. Examine the costs of production for Amazon.
    1. a)  Analyze the various costs a firm faces, their trends over time, and how they have impacted your Amazons profitability.
    2. b)  Apply the concepts of variable and fixed costs to Amazon for informing its output decisions. For instance, analyze how different kinds of costs (labor, research and development, raw materials) affect Amazons level of output.
  1. Explore
    1. a)  Discuss the market share of Amazon and its top competitors by providing details on current percentages for each firm and describing the trend over time. You might consider presenting the data graphically.
    2. b)  Analyze the barriers to entry in this market to illustrate the potential for new competition and its impact on Amazons future in the market.
    3. c)  Describe the market structure for Amazon, and analyze how this affects Amazons ability to influence the market.
  2. Recommendation
    1. a)  Develop a recommendation for how Amazons can manage its future production by synthesizing the data presented.
    2. b)  Suggest how Amazons position within the market and among its competitors will allow it to take your recommended action.
    3. c)  Describe how the firm can sustain its success going forward by evaluating the findings from demand trends and price elasticity.


the overall market for your firm.

Milestone One: Introduction ASSIGNMENT COMPLETE

In Module Two, you will submit a publish of the introduction (Section I) of your research paper, including all critical elements of Section I as listed above. In one to two pages, you will detail the purpose of the paper, summarize the history of the firm, and provide an overview of the firm. This milestone is graded with the Milestone One Rubric.

Milestone Two: Supply and Demand Conditions and Price Elasticity of Demand ASSIGNMENT COMPLETE

In Module Four, you will submit a publish of the supply and demand conditions (Section II) and price elasticity of demand (Section III) of your research paper, including all critical elements as listed above for each of those sections. Each of these sections should be one to two pages in length and should incorporate relevant data and supporting evidence. This milestone is graded with the Milestone Two Rubric.

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