Strategy & Innovation

  • GSM SI 718: Topics in Corporate Strategy and Innovation
    This course serves as a capstone to the concentrated core for the Professional Evening MBA program. The course draws on findings from a number of academic disciplines, especially economics, organization theory, sociology, accounting, and management policy to build a comprehensive understanding of how and why some firms achieve and sustain superior performance. The primary objectives of the course are to: 1) build upon students' foundational understanding of factors that affect organizations' long-run economic performance, 2) refresh students' use of strategy frameworks and analytical tools used for making recommendations to organizations on how they can work towards achieving superior performance, and 3) extend students' knowledge into advanced strategy topics and contemporary issues. The course is designed to develop an integrative view of the firm and its environment, along with appropriate analytical skills. Issues associated with professional ethics and corporate social responsibility are pervasive throughout the curriculum and students are encouraged to incorporate these perspectives in case analysis and classroom discussion. Global strategic management is an important a theme of the course: many of the cases are global companies, students will be challenged to extend the conceptual frameworks and apply any lessons learned to an international context.
  • GSM SI 750: Competition, Innovation, and Strategy
    Graduate Prerequisites: MG700, PL727, QM716, AC710, FE721, MK723, OM725, PL700
    "Competition, Innovation, and Strategy" is an integrative course designed to capitalize on your understanding of Finance, Operations Management, Marketing, and other functional issues. The course draws on a number of academic disciplines, especially economics, organization theory, and sociology, to build a fundamental understanding of how and why some firms achieve and sustain superior performance. We also study why some firms persistently generate returns that are lower than average. The course is analytically focused and requires that you evaluate both the external environment and the internal capabilities of organizations. Corporate diversification and global management are important topics that are also featured.
  • GSM SI 751: Competition, Innovation, and Strategy
    Graduate Prerequisites: OB712/713, AC710/711, MK723/724, OM725/726
    "Competition, Innovation, and Strategy" is an integrative course designed to capitalize on your understanding of Finance, Operations Management, Marketing, and other functional issues. The course draws on a number of academic disciplines, especially economics, organization theory, and sociology, to build a fundamental understanding of how and why some firms achieve and sustain superior performance. We also study why some firms persistently generate returns that are lower than average. The course is analytically focused and requires that you evaluate both the external environment and the internal capabilities of organizations. Corporate diversification and global management are important topics that are also featured.
  • GSM SI 814: Intellectual Property Strategies
    Graduate Prerequisites: OB712/713/715, MK713/723/724, QM711/716/717, AC710/711/712, FE717/721/722, or permission of the instructor.
    This course covers the ways in which companies use intellectual property to protect their investments in knowledge assets. Traditionally a concern for technology-intensive businesses, patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets have become important business tools throughout the knowledge-based economy. A good understanding of what IP assets are and how they work has become essential for managers in all types of organizations. This is not a law course, nor a how-to manual rather it is intended to develop your analytical understanding of fundamental economic and legal aspects of intellectual property systems, and how they drive competition and strategy.
  • GSM SI 830: Corporate Strategies for Growth
    Graduate Prerequisites: SI718/750/751
    This course will examine strategies for firm growth that involve expanding the range of the firm's business activities. We will study strategic logics underlying vertical integration, franchising, related and unrelated diversification, alliances, corporate venturing and spinouts, and other such strategies. We will also study the management challenges associated with these strategies, including designing organizational structures and managerial incentives, managing acquisitions, structuring supplier relationships, and fostering organizational cultures.
  • GSM SI 835: Real Estate Management
    Graduate Prerequisites: QM711/716/717, OM710/725/726, MK713/723/724, FE717/721/722
    This is an introductory course that covers the basics of real estate investing and managing. Subject materials include mortgages, lenders, forms of ownership, tax laws effecting real property, financial analysis and valuation techniques.
  • GSM SI 836: Foundations of Environmental Sustainability
    Graduate Prerequisites: PL714/727/FE730
    The changing relationship between business and the natural environment offers both challenges and opportunities for firms. In this course we will discuss many facets of business, including financing, risk management, measurement, competitive positioning, innovation, and strategy in the context of increasing pressures for improved environmental sustainability. The course will be interactive and discussion-oriented, with a case discussion in most class sessions, supplemented by debates, simulation exercises, visitors, student presentations, discussions of recent news articles, and mini-lectures. The course is appropriate for all students interested in how demands for sustainability will continue to change the business environment.
  • GSM SI 839: Design Thinking and Innovation
    This class will examine how managers and leaders can create the conditions for innovation at the individual, team and organizational levels - and how those conditions differ for startup and mature organizations. Managing innovation includes the generation of ideas; the integration of ideas into new product concepts; and the commercialization of ideas. While core strategy courses address the questions of what innovations to pursue and whether and when those innovations will bring value, this course addresses the question of how managers can create organizations to deliver innovations of value. Thus, the course will focus on the practices and processes that mangers need to put in place to enable organizations to execute on an innovation strategy. In doing so, students will evaluate how to balance the challenges of organizing, managing and leading innovation with the need to produce concrete, routine and expected outcomes within the organization. To be innovative, any new idea must resolve the innovation paradox - introducing enough novelty to appeal to new markets while retaining enough familiarity to tap into existing behaviors. Because design and innovation are frequently inseparable in managing this paradox, the class will assess how design contributes to innovation in product, process and business models across industry sectors. The course will also consider the role that all sources of innovation play - including communities, networks, brokers and other forms of open innovation. Students will be asked to reflect upon innovations that have been critical to their lives, and how these innovations were produced and gained market traction. Final group projects will explore how to "rescue" innovations in trouble with turnaround teams.
  • GSM SI 842: Real Estate Development
    The course provides a framework for evaluating the aspects underlying successful real estate development from concept and feasibility, through site control to regulatory review and construction. The course is taught utilizing class discussion, cases and outside speakers to reinforce the functional areas in the development process.
  • GSM SI 845: Technology Strategy
    Graduate Prerequisites: AC710/711/712, QM711/716/717, PL714/727/FE730, MK713/723/724, OM710/725/726, FE717/721/722
    Technology Strategy focuses on the interface between technological innovation and strategic management. This advanced strategy course covers the tools and concepts needed to understand how technological change creates new markets and new wealth; how technology-intensive industries differ from other industries; and the type of capabilities that technology-based firms need at different stages of their rapidly evolving industries. Some of the key topics covered include: platform dynamics and business models, standards wars, technology diffusion, technological discontinuities and disruptive innovation, models of industry evolution, dominant technological designs, complementary assets needed to profit from an innovation, and mechanisms to protect intellectual property. The course provides a rigorous treatment of the topics covered, combined with hands-on exercises and projects to help students apply the concepts to specific companies and technologies. Teaching methodology is a combination of interactive class discussions, online simulations, digital multimedia cases, paper-based cases, and guest speakers from industry. The course has been designed to provide students with a solid foundation of theories, tools, techniques and practices that will allow them to understand how to compete successfully in technology- intensive environments.
  • GSM SI 847: Strategic Analysis of Energy & Environmental Sustainability Projects
    Graduate Prerequisites: AC710/711/712, FE717/721/722, FE730/PL714/727, IS710/711/716, MK713/723/724, OB712/713/715, OM710/725/726, QM711/716/717, SI718/750/751
    This course is a field-based team project course focused on real world issues related to energy and environmental sustainability. Course projects are provided by external "client" organizations and provide students with an integrative, hands-on experience in the development, deployment, and/or implementation of sustainable energy/environmental technologies/systems/initiatives. Examples of client organizations are public/private/non-governmental organizations that operate in the: a) energy generation, distribution or storage sector, b) energy/energy services (ESCO)/environmental services sector, c) energy/environmental project development services or financing sector, or d) public/private sector, such as a large energy-user evaluating sustainable energy/environmental strategy/implementation alternatives. The course is of hybrid design, blending in-class lectures, panel discussions and cases with on-line elements and field site visits. Prior course work in areas such as finance, marketing, policy and strategy will be augmented with specific/relevant industry/application/technical content through online sources, webinars and expert speakers.
  • GSM SI 849: Corporate Sustainability Strategy
    Corporate Sustainability Strategy is an advanced corporate-level strategy course that explores such varied issues as the underpinnings, interconnectedness and systems dynamics of human-coupled natural ecosystems, limits to growth and the increasing influence of climate change, environmental degradation and natural resource depletion on the corporate strategy, industrial development and the global economy. Specifically, this course: 1) Applies situational analysis techniques and methods to macro-level social, economic and environmental systems and their driving forces, 2) Evaluates a variety of strategic planning/forecasting tools, methods and techniques, 3) Investigates decision frameworks for corporate strategy focused on creating/capturing value and risk management through a sequence of action over time, 4) Explores new emerging paradigms for product/service, business model, structural and financial innovations, 5) Identifies new opportunities/challenges for innovation and value creation/capture through collaborations and competition, partnerships/alliances/consortia and platforms. The course takes the perspective of the corporate leader/strategy analyst and challenges students to identify driving forces, evaluate global trends, understand implications and assess their impact on strategies, objectives, operations and performance of the firm.
  • GSM SI 852: Starting New Ventures
    Graduate Prerequisites: QM711/716/717, OM710/725/726, MK713/723/724, FE717/721/722
    This course focuses on the process of identifying and obtaining the necessary resources to launch an entrepreneurial venture through the development of a business plan. A well-written business plan will communicate the business concept in a way that attracts the various resource providers necessary for the venture's success. Students will individually develop a business concept and prepare and present a professional business plan.
  • GSM SI 855: Entrepreneurship
    Graduate Prerequisites: AC710/711/712, OB712/713/715, QM711/716/717, MK713/723/724, FE717/721/722
    The course is a comprehensive introduction to the entrepreneurial process from idea generation through venture launch and later growth. Initial lectures and case studies focus on idea generation and concept feasibility along with the skills, competencies and perspectives entrepreneurs must develop to manage the organization through each phase of development. Later lectures and cases emphasize the issues faced by entrepreneurs in scaling innovative enterprises; use of strategic alliances, attracting funding and managing investors, managing growth expansion and choosing among exit options.
  • GSM SI 856: International Entrepreneurship
    This course focuses on international entrepreneurship, covering the development of skills to identify, evaluate, start and manage ventures that are international in scope. Specific topics will include market entry, forming alliances, managing growth and cross-border financing in different regions of the world. Support from local governments and the cultural, ethical, legal, and human resource issues facing the entrepreneur will also be discussed. Readings will primarily be in the form of case studies and will be supplemented with outside articles and guest speakers. Team projects addressing current events, international negotiations, and business strategies will be used to integrate the course material.
  • GSM SI 859: Strategy Implementation
    Graduate Prerequisites: OM710/725/726, MK713/723/724, FE717/721/722
    Gain the skills and know-how to manage up and across your organization, passing the normal organizational tests along the way from technical expert to cross-functional integrator to directing the future course of your organization. This is strategy implementation for the middle manager who needs to 1) size-up the situation and 2) determine how to gain the power needed to achieve their objectives. One of the qualitative factors that will be explored in great detail is personal style choice vis à vis different stakeholders and organizational politics and the resultant perceptions of you and your programs. Students will study both successful and less-successful managers through cases and readings, honing their own, personal managerial style.
  • GSM SI 863: Strategic and Financial Analysis and Design
    Graduate Prerequisites: OB712/713/715, AC710/711/712, FE717/721/722, QM711/716/717, PL714/727/FE730, IS710/711/716, MK713/723/724, OM710/725/726, SI718/750/751
    The purpose of this course is to increase students' awareness of what they already know about business and what they can know through strategic corporate financial analysis. Students will use numeric thinking and documentation to reduce uncertainty and to bring the strategic and limiting factors of managerial decisions into focus. The course is appropriate for students who have financial savvy as well as those who want to develop their analytical capabilities. It is case-based, emphasizing business sense first, and developing through first-hand experience a sense of the strengths and limitations of corporate financial data, financial theory and strategic evaluation models. It stresses fast approximate analysis to achieve managerial insights over precise calculation.
  • GSM SI 868: International Consulting Project
    Have you ever dreamed of climbing the Great Wall of China? How about consulting to a Chinese firm in Beijing? The International Consulting Project is an MBA course that involves consulting work during the fall semester on campus, with a trip to Asia in to deliver the team's recommendation personally to the client at their offices. Examples of past projects and more background can be found on this link: Much of the past students' work over the years has both been implemented and widely published in the Chinese business press.
  • GSM SI 870: Strategies for Sustainable Development
    Graduate Prerequisites: OB712/713/715, AC710/711/712, QM711/716/717, MK713/723/724, FE717/721/722, PL714/727/FE730, IS710/711716, OM710/725/726
    SI870: Strategies for Sustainable Development is an advanced strategy course that explores the analysis, conceptualization and development of innovative, market-based solutions for sustainable development challenges for a future defined by natural resource, environmental and biological constraints. Specifically, the course the explores 1) the complex global context for sustainable development, 2) key stakeholders, 3) the emergent strategy (entrepreneurial) development process, method and practice, and 4) the structure, governance, and financing/microeconomics of new, emergent organizational forms and business models for sustainable development, such as cross-sector cooperative alliances, public-private partnerships with a particular focus multi-stakeholder platforms. Note: Market-based solutions for sustainable development are economically self-sustaining alternatives to traditional governmentally-funded or aid-based programs for addressing systemic social, economic and environmental problems. These solutions engage public, private, NGO and civil society actors and employ a variety in emerging organizational forms (both for profit and non-profit), innovative business models and strategies to deliver effective solutions at scale. The course takes a stakeholder-oriented, system-of-systems approach to the issues of sustainable development with a specific focus on the network of interrelated actors and interdependent issues within the class of "wicked problems"; .i.e. social, economic or environmental problems that are difficult to frame, scope and seemingly insoluble because of incomplete, contradictory, and changing requirements. Cases, readings, video and lectures will establish global context and sustainable development worldview across nine countries; Brazil, China, India, Israel, Japan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and South Africa, and explore solutions to a range of issues from energy, food, water and climate change to health, education, economic inclusion, gender equity, security, organized crime and the informal. Students will work in teams to initially identify, frame and scope a complex, global sustainable development challenge and then work throughout the semester to research, conceptualized, evaluate and propose a global initiative for a market-based solution to that challenge.
  • GSM SI 871: Strategies for Bringing Technology to Market
    Strategies for Bringing Technology to Market is a unique course that guides student teams as they undertake commercial go-to-market strategy for scientific and engineering breakthroughs. By collaborating with faculty and graduate students in the University's research labs and mentors from the business community, teams will assess the economic and social prospects of recent technology innovations, outline the technical and market risks and the key commercial milestones and make recommendations for the most effective commercialization strategy. 

Project work is supported by lectures that focus on critical skills required. Guidance will be provided in assessing critical commercialization milestones by a combination of faculty and mentors from the business community.