CyberFair Project ID: 8511

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: The Dusk of Pen Industry
Category: 3. Business and Community Organizations

School: Kang Chiao International School Linkou Campus
    New Taipei City, , ROC (Taiwan)

7 students, ages 16~17 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 10, 2020. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2020

Classes and Teachers: Yi-yun Chen, Ning-yin Zheng, Kevin Guan-Ting Lin

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site: http://

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

New Taipei City is a polynucleated city with the highest population in Taiwan and has developed rapidly in the past decades. As one of the most important cities in Taiwan, it takes the advantage of its location near Taipei City, the capital, and shares Taipei Metro System with the cities. The public transportation sharing constitutes the formation of Greater Taipei Area, and the cooperation between the two cities make the two prosperous and appealing to the global communities; In terms of business development, New Taipei City has been awarded the first prize in the Transformational Business Awards given by Financial Times in 2016.

2. Summary of Our Project

As the era moves on, with the development of new technology, new industries are booming and taking over the market while certain industries are losing their used-to-be dominance and glory, like the remain of a day--the sunset. This research focuses on a Taiwanese pen twist manufacturing company and its development in the past, present, and future. Also, this research aims to shed light on the revolution of the sunset industries--by drawing the concept of hidden champion, we examine the predicaments and obstacles that minor and medium manufacturers are facing, and we aimed to discuss the methods or perspectives that the sunset industries can adopt to make innovations in this internationally competitive generation.

3. Our Computer and Internet Access

A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:more than 50%

B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:more than 6

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dial-up modem

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

First, there was very less information about our topic on the Web, so we interviewed figures in the field for first hand informations.

Second, there was times when opinion in the group deviated. To reach an agreement, we listened to each other's point of view, then mediate a suitable result for everyone.

Third, the barrier of space and time. It was hard to have a face-to-face meeting when everyone in the group have different time schedule and living area. That was where online platforms came in, we complete most of our works on Google Docs. Softwares like Line was also helpful for group discussions.

Another obstacle was our lack of time management. Our method was making a time schedule then stick to it. We clearly label when we discuss, when we should finish and move on in the plan, so we were able to stay efficient. Finally, we had no idea how to build a Website in the first place. None of us was familiar with programing. Thankfully there are many engineers work in the school that were willing to help. We consulted and learned programing skills from them.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

Our research during the participation has raised attention to an important industry in Taiwan; it has emerged people's realization of the contribution of small business in Taiwan's economy. It also provides students with information of more possible options for their future career.

6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?

In this project we gained researching skills, realized the importance of passion, and how to interact with people, the essential elements for learning.

Research is what every project and presentation started with. It could only be gained through practicing, like scrolling the screen looking for the accurate data, or scanning articles seeking for useful messages. Our simplified introduction for the history of pen industry comes from the researches we done. In addition, the project provides us a chance to get familiar with helpful tools for research.We used internet sources, online platforms to organize and collect data.

Interactions with people is an ability not just supporting coursework but an important life skill. This project include interviews and contacting with people in the community. We had overcome obstacles like lack of agreement and time management by making acceptable time table for everyone. Therefore we could be more confident when we need to cooperate with others while doing required coursework, or fitting the standards.

Finally, passion is needed to keep continue a research. We learned how to appropriately use our passion to keep ourselves working. We found that when we actually care for what we are researching, it would be much easier to get through the barriers. Realizing we can overcome the high standards hard to meet, or goals difficult to achieve with a heart of interest would certainly save our time in the future.

Project Elements

1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your CyberFair project?

We complete our CyberFair project through using online resources, oral interviews and the spirit of teamwork.

We completed most of our research on online sharing platforms on the Web. Therefore the computer was the main tool we use. The advantage of online working is that it is easier to share ideas and edit documents together; the limit of space was no longer an obstacle. First, we were able to contact more people in the community while collecting questionnaires. We used the online platform Google Forms to create and spread our questionnaires. In addition, Google Forms organized data we received into charts, which saved our time so we could focus more on analyzing data. Second, it provided a convenient platform for us to work no matter where and when. We could access resources online at any time and gather the latest news because of the worldwide scale of the internet. Third, the website Hellow Web simplified the process of programing our own website.

The oral interview was another technique we used when doing our research. We visited the founder and the present owner of PEN. MECH to include opinions from professionals in our work. A face-to-face conversation with professional business founders was extremely helpful for a deeper understanding of the industry we were studying.

Finally, the most essential element we discovered during this research is teamwork. Different perspectives between working partners had to balance each other’s weaknesses and improved the quality of our research. We received more than what normal research could have brought; coherence and friendships were built between us while working as a group in the project.

2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your CyberFair project both on-line and in person.

We contacted people working in the industry and students in the community through interviews and email surveys and received feedback from both.

Mr. Huang, the founder of PEN. MECH who we interviewed, was impressed by our attention to his company and the falling trend of the pen industry. He expressed approval to the project and he hoped more people could see the situation the pen industry is in. He thought research like this is important for deeper understanding of the key companies that contribute to Taiwan's economic development.

Through email surveys, we received plenty of feedback from people in the community. Our research had raised their interest in the story of pen, the tool they use everyday. Before receiving our email, they were mostly unaware of the current situation of the pen industry; they were surprised by Taiwan's involvement in the production of pens. After they learned the importance of the industry, they said they wanted to know more about the history and current status of the local companies who produce pens.

3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?

The project has called wide attention in the community, the story of “sunset” industries, the fighters of Taiwan’s economic is now passing among students and teachers in the school. We affirmed companies like PEN.MECH, which we analyzed, for them to remain faith and never stand down. Through public voice, the government is aiming to show more support under pressure from the community. The impact on public attention is continuing spreading, we are looking forward for more companion to join, showing the small local companies that we care.

4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?

We invited people in the community, merchant, students and teachers in the school to complete the research with us. Their involvement was exclusive; no surveys could be done without their help. Important data were provided from people, students, and teachers around us, which our analysis is based on. They kindfully spent after school period and leisure time to respond our emails, answer our questions and give advices. The founder and following owner of PEN.MECH helped us, too. They educated us about the industry we were researching, and shared their experience, so we could stand upon their shoulders, seen a bigger picture when dealing the issue.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 8511)

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