The School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences offers two undergraduate courses appropriate to the study of Innovation & Entrepreneurship:
ECO 4346 Technology, the Economy and Society
(3 credit hours)
This course explores the ways technological innovation, economic dynamics and societal contexts shape one another. In that sense, it challenges a commonplace view of technology as an external "black-box" influence on economic growth and the larger society. We will explore the view that technical advances are drawn out from - and have their impacts shaped within - markets and underlying societal arrangements. The course has been developed in ways that highlight theoretical and research contributions from across the several social sciences (especially economics and sociology), engineering, and management. For purposes of illustration, we will examine ongoing research efforts to identify the economic impacts of so-called "information technologies" (IT) on employment and earnings, as well as profit and productivity. Special emphasis will be devoted to understanding how advanced technologies are transforming both the work of -- and work in -- industries throughout the economy, even as they blur the distinctions among them.
ECO 4348 Business and Technology (3 credit hours)
This course examines the relationships between technology -- its production, patterns of adoption, usage and impact --and business activity at the levels of the individual firm, industry, and larger national and global economy. While new technologies shape business activities and firms, the opposite is also true. We will survey a rapidly-changing U.S. business landscape, identifying and analyzing its defining technology features and drawing out the implications broadly. We will devote special consideration to the role of information-technology and telecommunication (ITC) technologies and pay particular attention to issues related to what amount to the "second coming" of e-commerce and Internet applications. Attention will be directed to internally-generated tensions related to firm/industry structure, competitive behavior and economic performance, as well as externally-generated tensions associated with the external marketplace and public policy, technical, and social forces. Through instructor-led presentation of lecture materials and discussions, selected readings, and homework assignments, participants will be encouraged to explore the larger contexts shaping the interactions between enterprise and technology.