March 19, 2013
Business Research Methods Part I
A business organization must make tough decisions when faced with a dilemma. They could be rising costs, employee turnover, or in the case of British Petroleum (BP), safety.
The recent explosion, deaths, and environmental impact of the deepwater Horizon oil drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico brought the question of drilling platform safety to the forefront of the news, continuing to do so over two years later. The disaster is one of the more recent events and “is the largest marine oil spill in history” (Cleveland, 2013).
Research Question The dilemma that BP faces is keeping their employees safe while working in an industry known for its immediate danger. Are there warnings in the form of safety incidents that show likelihood that an event similar to the deepwater Horizon could happen again?
A case study, “also referred to as the case history” (research text) is used to “obtain multiple perspectives of a single organization, situation, event, or process at a point in time or over a period of time”. (Cooper & Schindler, 2011, p. 181) The research for this case study will include safety reports from many global oil companies. The purpose for researching many companies is because “When multiple units are chosen, it is because they offer similar results for predictable reasons” (Cooper & Schindler, 2011, p. 181). It is expected that researching different oil companies will show a common factor in safety incidents leading to catastrophic events.
A non-probability sample design will be used for collecting data. However, to select effectively a sample design certain questions must be answered. They include, “What is the target population? What are the parameters of interest? What is the sampling frame? What is the appropriate sampling method? What size sample is needed” (Cooper & Schindler, 2011,
References: Cleveland, C. J. (2013). Deepwater Horizon Disaster: Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Retrieved from http://www.eoearth.org/article/Deepwater_Horizon_oil_spill?topic=50364 Cooper, D. R., & Schindler, P. S. (2011). Business Research Methods (11th ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database. Crossman, A. (n.d.). Types Of Sampling Designs. About.com. Retrieved from http://sociology.about.com/od/Research/a/sampling-designs.htm