Undergraduate courses

Ideas to Impact (QSTSI250)

  • Social Inquiry I
  • The Individual in Community
  • Creativity/Innovation

This course is required for the Innovation and Entrepreneurship minor. The goal of this course is to expose students to the conceptual frameworks that guide ideation and innovation. Thus it will include all five learning principles the guide design of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship minor. The course analyzes the conditions that foster innovation as well as the process by which ideas progress from conception to implementation and execution, and the creation of either economic or social impact. Students will be exposed to theories on the conditions that affect the generation and development of creativity and innovation within individuals, teams, cities, and regions. To foster experiential learning, the whole class will be structured around the process of innovation with a "live case" that focuses on creating social innovations for the City of Boston. When people think about great social challenges, they often look afar to distant countries. Yet, many social problems lie right around the corner from students' daily lives. Students will develop a toolkit comprised of brainstorming, design thinking, human centered design, prototyping, storyboarding and field research. Students will conduct original field research within the City of Boston and identify a challenge or problem to address which they will focus on for the duration of the course, culminating in final presentations. Effective Fall 2019, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Social Inquiry I, The Individual in Community, Creativity/Innovation.


Strategy, Innovation, and Global Competition (QSTSI422)

  • Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy
  • Creativity/Innovation
  • Writing-Intensive Course

Provides students with a powerful set of tools which will prepare them to analyze, formulate, and implement business firm strategy with the aim of attaining sustainable competitive advantage. Adopts the perspective of the general manager, challenging student knowledge in each functional area in the effort to create integrative strategies that serve the needs of shareholders, as well as other stakeholders inside and outside the company. The course includes conceptual readings, which elucidate the fundamental concepts and frameworks of strategic management, as well as case analyses. Effective Fall 2018, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy, Writing-Intensive Course, Creativity/Innovation.


Cleantech Venture Consulting Practicum (QSTSI430)

Required course for the Undergraduate Minor in Sustainable Energy. Serves as the capstone project providing students with a multidisciplinary experience that applies ALL three disciplines on the Undergraduate Minor in Sustainable Energy, i.e. Business, Environmental Sciences and Engineering. The practicum is offered in conjunction with a "sponsoring company" to provide students with a hands-on experience with a real-world sustainable energy project.


Corporate Strategy: Formulation and Implementation (QSTSI432)

This course deepens students' understanding of why and how multi-business corporations can successfully expand their operations into new business areas. The course exposes students to the challenges associated with a range of strategies firms use to manage the vertical and horizontal scope of their activities. These strategies include vertical integration, partnering and supplier relationships, related and unrelated diversification, globalization, franchising, alliances, acquisitions and divestitures. Along with examining the formulation of these corporate strategies, the course also examines the implementation considerations in order to create successful conditions for the pursuit of these strategies. Topics addressed include questions related to the formal organization (i.e., reporting relationships, structural design, incentives, budgeting authority) as well as the informal organization (i.e. culture, dissent, networks) 4 cr.


Entertainment Management (QSTSI435)

(Offered in Los Angeles) Surveys the application of management concepts and principles to the film, television, video, new media and music industry. This course examines administration and finance, development, production, and distribution, and introduces students to the organizations and people (such as studios, independent production companies, talent managers, and agents) who manage, invest, and eventually profit in this creative industry. Much of the class time is spent in discussion of current entertainment industry trends. Students gain the skills to achieve their own entertainment goals.


Talent Representation and Management (QSTSI438)

(Offered in Los Angeles) Using case studies and business models, students examine the manner in which critical players interact and attempt to work together in behalf of clients in an effort to make their "professional dreams" come to fruition. Participants will gain an understanding of the different areas of talent representation, how each one functions in the scope of a talent's career and what the responsibilities are for each position in each area of representation. Participants will also gain a clear view of what the business of Entertainment Representation has to offer as a chosen career. 4 cr.



Managing a Growing Enterprise (QSTSI445)

Designed to help students understand the intricacies of running a small company. The course addresses the major challenges in small companies, including valuation, negotiation, deal structure, personnel and compensation, and marketing and financing. Exposes students to a wide range of business activities, emphasizing significant differences between large and small enterprises. The course uses a competitive computer simulation to provide students with the opportunity to "run" their own business. Please click here to watch a 1 minute video overview of the course.


Dilemmas in Scaling New Ventures (QSTSI448)

The purpose of this class is to increase students' chances of success in their early stage ventures by helping them avoid common team-related mistakes. We explore specific dilemmas that founders face--decisions that arrive early on, can be uncomfortable, and that need to be made with minimal information--but that can have far-reaching consequences. Whether the founding team stays together, whether the venture achieves an attractive exit, and the extent to which the founder(s) share in those rewards can all be largely determined by early-stage choices.


Organizing for Design and Innovation (QSTSI451)

This course examines 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 those ideas into new product concepts; and the commercialization of those 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 sustainable innovations of value.


Strategies in Environmental Sustainability (QSTSI453)

  • Digital/Multimedia Expression
  • Teamwork/Collaboration

With the growing global call for climate action, firms are recognizing business imperatives for climate resiliency. This course broadens our vision of corporate strategy to incorporate environmental initiatives as a way to create value. If you are a student who embraces the power of the private sector to lead climate imperatives, you will find this course particularly applicable. You will leave this course with a clear and actionable framework for implementing sustainability initiatives at all levels of the firm. Effective Spring 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Digital/Multimedia Expression, Teamwork/Collaboration.


Intellectual Property Strategies (QSTSI464)

This course looks at how companies can best use intellectual property (patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets) to protect their proprietary ideas and investments in knowledge assets, shape competition, and realize value from innovation.


Real Estate Development (QSTSI469)

Real estate development is a process rather than a product. Too often, assumptions about occupancy, market absorption, rental income growth, valuation and competition are based on guesswork and interest in specific product types. The course reviews the underlying demographic market data that drives demand; utilizing data such as population and job growth, market and marketability analysis. The focus then shifts to site selection and feasibility analysis, the available methods of gaining site control and the process of assembling the professional team. Later, the course reviews the regulatory control process, along with budgeting and contract award and review of the construction control processes. The course is introductory in nature and assumes students have little or no knowledge about the development process.


International Entrepreneurship (QSTSI471)

Designed for students who may at some point be interested in pursuing managerial careers in the international entrepreneurial sector, and covers the development of skills to identify, evaluate, start, and manage ventures that are international in scope. Over the course of the semester, the class "travels" to more than fifteen countries on five continents, and analyze operations at each stage of the entrepreneurial process. The course covers market entry, forming alliances, negotiations, managing growth, and cross-border financing. Support from local governments, and the cultural, ethical, legal, and human resource issues facing the entrepreneur is also covered. Please click here to watch a 1 minute video overview of the course.



The Business of Technology Innovation (QSTSI480)

  • Historical Consciousness
  • Social Inquiry I

Provides an introduction to entrepreneurship and business for the engineer. Topics include finding business ideas; recognizing good from bad; understanding the importance of business model; turning technology into a business, including what to sell and how to sell it; the role of engineering within a business; business financial statements; and startups and venture capital, including starting a company or joining a startup. Effective Fall 2020, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Historical Consciousness, Social Inquiry I.


Strategy for Technology-Based Firms (QSTSI482)

Serves Questrom students concentrating in entrepreneurship or who are interested in high-technology sectors, and ENG students who have taken SI480. This interdisciplinary course covers technology life-cycles, the co-evolution of industries and technologies, strategies for commercialization of new technologies (appropriability, acquiring complementary assets and capabilities, managing technical teams, and impact of regulatory and other environmental factors on commercialization). Special emphasis is placed on joint learning and interdisciplinary teamwork by students across Engineering and Questrom.


Directed Study in Strategy and Innovation (QSTSI498)

Directed study in Strategy and Innovation. 2 or 4 cr. Application available on Undergraduate Program website.

Graduate Courses

Fundamentals of Research and the Philosophies of Science (previously MK912) (QSTDS906)

This course introduces students to research. The class provides a brief introduction to the philosophy of science and debates about the nature of theory before diving thoroughly into different research methods. Students are exposed to research methods from their own and adjacent fields ranging from causal inference and experiments to qualitative research methods. The last part of the class introduces students to issues around diversity, ethics, and equity in research. As part of the class students will complete the introductory ethics modules that are required by the university. Students will be graded on their class participation, a research proposal which is due at the end of the class, and their feedback to other students on their research proposals.


Methods for Causal Inference in Strategy Research (QSTDS925)

(Formerly SI 915) This course reviews tools and methods for drawing causal inferences from non-experimental data. The class emphasizes conceptual difficulties associated with establishing causality in observational settings, the strengths and weaknesses of statistical methods based on so-called natural experiments, and the practical problems that arise in the application of these tools. This course is designed to complement a traditional two-semester graduate sequence in econometrics.


Bench-to-Bedside: Translating Biomedical Innovation from the Laboratory to the Marketplace (QSTHM801)

The subject of the course is the translation of medical technologies into new products and services for the healthcare system. The course begins with a rigorous study of university research commercialization including intellectual property, licensing and planning, creating, funding and building new entrepreneurial ventures. Concepts and tools are presented for assessing new technologies and their potential to be the basis for commercialization. Cross- disciplinary teams of students will be formed which will evaluate translational research projects currently being developed at Boston University and other local academic research institutions, to develop a go-to-market strategy. There will be a case studies and guest lecturers to discuss examples of both success and failure in technology commercialization.


Social Impact Field Seminar (QSTIM860)

This course provides an action-based learning experience for students interested in understanding how for-profit and non-profit organizations develop innovative products and services that help mitigate grand challenges such as climate change, food security, global health, and poverty, and enable them to grow their business and sustain their competitive advantage over time. Students will work on a live 'social impact' consulting project for a client from the host country, and present their recommendation to the client while in the country. Furthermore, students will visit and interact with various players in the social impact sector (e.g., entrepreneurs, high-level executives, non-profit leaders) to learn about the opportunities and challenges they face. This course is ideal for students interested in social impact, sustainable energy, environmental sustainability, social entrepreneurship, socially responsible investing (SRI), and global health and healthcare.


Competition, Innovation, and Strategy (QSTSI750)

"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.


Competition, Innovation, and Strategy (QSTSI751)

"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.


Intellectual Property Strategies (QSTSI814)

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.


Scaling New Ventures (QSTSI820)

The purpose of this class is to increase students' chances of success in their early-stage ventures by helping them avoid common team-related mistakes. We explore specific dilemmas that founders face--decisions that arrive early on, can be uncomfortable, and that need to be made with minimal information--but that can have far-reaching consequences. Whether the founding team stays together, whether the venture achieves an attractive exit, and the extent to which the founder(s) share in those rewards can all be largely determined by early-stage choices. We will focus primarily on "people" issues as well as the trade-offs involved with enlisting outside resources to accelerate growth (e.g., VC funding). It is composed of three modules: 1) Assembling the Founding Team, 2) Scaling the Team, and 3) Tradeoffs in Scaling via External Resources.


Corporate Strategies for Growth (QSTSI830)

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.


Real Estate Development, Finance, and Management (QSTSI835)

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 affecting real property, financial analysis, and valuation techniques.


Decarbonization of the Global Economy (QSTSI836)

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.


Design Thinking and Innovation (QSTSI839)

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.


Real Estate Development (QSTSI842)

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.


Technology Strategy (QSTSI845)

Technology Strategy is an advanced graduate class that equips students with an array of interrelated frameworks, concepts, and tools for analyzing and managing businesses in an environment with rapid technological change. The course complements both a core strategy course and other strategy and functional electives. It should be particularly valuable for students who want to work in or start businesses in high-technology sectors, and also those who want to better understand how growth and wealth are created through technological innovation in a modern economy. Technology Strategy provides a comprehensive review of the key theories and tools needed to understand: (a) how technological change creates new markets and prompts new business models; (b) how technology- based firms can outcompete rivals in fast-growing markets characterized by high uncertainty; (c) how firms assemble the resources required to commercialize an innovative technology; and (d) how the evolution of technology affects the type of firm capabilities needed to succeed in an industry over time. Specific topics covered in this class include: technology diffusion, models of industry evolution, technological discontinuities and disruptive innovation, R&D management, intellectual property, complementary assets needed to profit from innovation, industry standards, platform dynamics, and technology policy.


Corporate Sustainability Strategy (QSTSI849)

Focuses on embedding sustainability (ESG/CSR) into corporate strategy as an approach for creating long-term shareholder/stakeholder value, where value covers the broad spectrum of economic, environmental and social outcomes. Through readings, lectures, case discussions, in-class exercises, lab session and a team project, this course will: 1) Introduce students to problem framing and environmental scanning techniques as methods for understanding macro-level social, economic and environmental systems and their implications; 2) Apply a variety of long-range strategic forecasting and analysis methods, techniques and tools through a scenario planning lab simulation; 3) Develop decision frameworks for corporate strategy development focused on creating/capturing value and managing risk through a sequence of strategic actions over time; 4) Explore newly emerging paradigms for sustainability-driven innovations in product/service, value chain and business model development and stakeholder-based, non-market actions.


Starting New Ventures (QSTSI852)

There isn't a "one size fits all" approach to starting new ventures. Start-ups need a strategy that aligns with their scarce resources. This course highlights the process of how to choose an entrepreneurial strategy, the specific choices that matter, how key choices fit together to form an overall entrepreneurial strategy, and the playbook for particular entrepreneurial strategies. Students will develop, analyze, and recommend entrepreneurial strategies for business concepts they develop.


Entrepreneurship (QSTSI855)

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.


Innovation Eco-Systems (QSTSI858)

This course is designed to help students to understand the importance of entrepreneurial eco-systems and the opportunities and support given to new ventures within these eco-systems. It provides a mechanism for MBA students to learn how the components of this innovation cycle interact with and complement each other. It will develop unique points of view on the role of Israel as a source of technology innovation and transformation and will present a mirror to examine the similarities and differences to the innovation culture that exists in the USA in general but Boston in particular. It will also develop a framework to identify the components that constitute an innovation eco-system to permit comparative analyses of how eco-systems differ in the ways they support innovation and entrepreneurship (e.g. Silicon Valley, Route 128, Israel, etc.).


Strategy Implementation (QSTSI859)

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 a 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.


International Consulting Project (QSTSI868)

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: http://www.bclob.com/icp-home/ Much of the past students' work over the years has both been implemented and widely published in the Chinese business press.


Strategies for Bringing Technology to Market (QSTSI871)

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.


Directed Study: Strategy and Innovation (QSTSI898)

Graduate-level directed study in Strategy & Innovation. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Directed Study: Strategy and Innovation (QSTSI899)

Graduate-level directed study in Strategy & Innovation. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Research Seminar in Technology Strategy and Innovation (QSTSI917)

This doctoral seminar serves as a survey course to the broad area of technology and innovation management. We will review and critique a large and diverse body of literature that can be considered "core" to the field. We will place emphasis on both classic theories and seminal contributions as well as on recent research that builds upon or extends the established theories. One key differentiator of this research seminar is that five professors actively doing research in the field will teach it. While having multiple instructors brings some coordination challenges (these are less critical in doctoral seminars than they are in masters level classes), it has one major advantage: it allows each faculty to lead those sessions that deal with topics of her or his direct research expertise. Students can expect to cover each topic with researchers that have been important contributors to the intellectual debate in the topic they teach. The seminar will cover key issues in the management of technology and innovation including innovation definitions and patterns (e.g. industry life cycle), entry timing strategies, platforms and standards, networks, dynamic capabilities, organizing for innovation, open and community-based innovation, licensing & patenting, technology diffusion, geography of innovation, and science and innovation policy. SI917 provides a solid base to critically explore many key topics of research in technology and innovation management. It is therefore aimed at doctoral students who plan to do research in technology and innovation management, or those who need a solid exposure to these topics to inform their research in related areas.


Organizations in Strategy and Economics (QSTSI920)

This doctoral seminar will compare and contrast ideas about organizational design and the performance consequences of organizational decisions from the closely related fields of Strategy and Economics. The first half of the semester will focus on the role of organizations (typically firms) in several schools of thought within Strategic Management. The second half of the semester will cover similar topics from an economic perspective, which places more emphasis on incentives, formal contracts and specific kinds of information problems (i.e. moral hazard and adverse selection). At the end of this course, students should be able to explain how the role of organizations differs across several key theoretical lenses used in Strategic Management (e.g. the Knowledge Based View vs. Strategic Human Capital Theory). Identify the core incentive and informational problems that underpin most economic models of organization. Articulate areas where Strategy and Economics have reached a consensus on the key drivers of organization, as well as questions where the two fields make different assumptions and/or reach different conclusions and describe key empirical regularities and associations that have informed organizational theory-building efforts in both strategy and economics.


Current Topics Seminar (QSTSI990)

For PhD students in the Strategy and Innovation department. Registered by permission only.


Directed Study: Strategy and Innovation (QSTSI998)

PhD-level directed study in Strategy & Innovation. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Directed Study: Strategy and Innovation (QSTSI999)

PhD-level directed study in Strategy & Innovation. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Social Impact: Business, Society, and the Natural Environment (QSTSR801)

This course explores the relationship between corporations, society, and the natural environment. Specifically, it examines the ways in which governments, corporations and civil society (fail to) have positive impact and manage issues where the pursuit of private goals is deemed inconsistent with the public interest. There are two modules to the course: (1) The first module examines these issues and the tensions that arise between the different stakeholders. In particular, we will discuss different types of market failures (due to negative externalities, imperfect information, public goods, and market control) and their impact on the natural and social environment. (2) The second module explores how (non-profit and for-profit) organizations can take private actions to mitigate the previously identified market failures and respond to the increasing pressure to address environmental and social issues through the adoption of sustainable business practices. This course is ideal for any student interested in social impact such as corporate social responsibility, environmental sustainability, nonprofit & public management, sustainable finance & responsible investment, social entrepreneurship, global health, and clean technology & sustainable energy. It is open to all full-time MBA and PEMBA students, and it is the foundational course for students in the Social Impact MBA program.