Decades of research digitized and how students can benefit

July 15, 2015 | Hamilton, ON
Contributed by Chelsea Parker, Advancement Intern

innis-libraryInnis Library has digitized over 300 McMaster Business working papers. These papers date back to 1970. DeGroote has a rich history in research, and having digital working papers provides students with ease and accessibility to important information held in Innis’ collections.

Working papers are pre-publication versions of academic journal articles, book chapters, or conference papers. These preliminary papers are a way for researchers to share their ideas or findings and receive feedback for revision before publication. Innis Library’s community includes the collection of DeGroote School of Business Working Papers, MeRC (McMaster eBusiness Research Centre) Working Papers, and MINT (Management of Innovation and New Technology) Research Centre Working Papers.

Innis Library manually digitized the working papers in order to make them accessible to anyone. These working papers are open access publications and can be found using Google, MacSphere, or McMaster’s library catalogue. Digitizing working papers begins by preparing the printed working papers for scanning. This includes removing staples, binding tape and security strips. The papers are then scanned in PDF file format and then edited, merged and run through OCR (Optical Character Recognition). The files are then uploaded to McMaster University’s institutional repository. Working papers are described by title, author, subjects, abstracts, etc., in order to be easily searched. Digitizing working papers is a fairly manual process and the whole project has taken approximately 9 months to finish.

How are working papers beneficial to me, the student?

  • Learn about the research interests of your professors.

An interesting advantage of having working papers digitized is the ability to reference and learn more about your professor’s research interest. Being able to filter by author allows you to find working papers written by your professors. Having the papers digitized also allows professors to easily share the links of their working papers with students.

  • Learn about up and coming areas of research.

Newer working papers can help students identify up and coming areas of research. You can view the research trends and learn more about current and past research trends that may interest you.

  • Supplement your projects and course assignments with actual DeGroote research.

Working papers can be a great resource for projects. There are working papers related to each of DeGroote’s specializations and they can be used for various course assignments, research, or general reading to keep current in business research.

  • Recognize trends in past business research; see how research has changed from 1970.

By filtering the working papers by year, you are able to view how much business research has changed over 45 years. It is interesting to see which research trends came from which decade and which topics remain relevant today.

  •  Learn about current and past research in your specialization.

What is included in the collection?

DeGroote’s collection of working papers contains papers relating to each of the commerce specializations. Listed below are examples of working paper titles that may be of interest to you if you are specializing in a certain field.

Marketing – Banting, -Peter M., “Customer · Service in Industrial Marketing: A Comparative Study,” October, 1976

Human resources – Isik Zeytinoglu and Leanne Norris, “Global Diversity in Employment Relationships: A Typology of Flexible Employment”, March, 1996.

Accounting – Hanna, J .R., “Professional Accounting Education in Canada: Problems and Prospects”, November, 1979.

Information systems – Ali-Reza Montazemi, “An Analysis of Information Technology Assessment and Adoption in Small Business Environments”, October, 1986

Finance – Y. Lilian Chan, Bernadette E. Lynn, “Evaluating Tangibles and Intangibles of Capital Investments”, February, 1992.

Operations management – George Steiner and Paul Stephenson, “Subset-Restricted Interchange for Dynamic MinMax Scheduling Problems”, September, 1996.

Strategic management – Thomas E. Muller, “Baby Boomers’ Changing Values: Strategic Implications for the Small Business”, July, 1990.

International business – Peter M. Banting and David L. Blenkhorn, “Developing and Managing Japanese and U. S. OEM — Canadian Autoparts Supplier Relationships in the 1990s”, June, ‘l.990

DeGroote School of Business and Innis Library works together to support academic and research interests. Having an increasingly large presence on the internet, Innis Library allows students to access its resources remotely and conveniently.

DeGroote School of Business Working Papers, MeRC, and MINT can be found using Google, MacSphere, or McMaster’s library catalogue. Innis Library has a created a guide on How to Find McMaster Business Working Papers.

Included in the guide is a list of missing papers Innis Library is hoping to acquire to fill the gaps in the collections. If you happen to have any of the missing working papers in your possession, Innis Library would be grateful if you could lend them for digitization. Please drop them off at Innis Library (KTH-108) or contact them at or 905-525-9140 ext. 22081.

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