COMM 382 - The Economics of Entrepreneurship and Innovation (formerly COMM 486T)

This course is intended for third or fourth year Sauder undergraduate students interested in innovation-driven industries. It examines the fundamental economic trade-offs faced by entrepreneurs who want to commercialize innovations within start-ups and established firms. We study the entrepreneurs’ strategic decisions of disrupting existing market environments, and their internal challenges of building new organizational capabilities. The course draws on fundamental concepts from microeconomics, strategic management, and related disciplines, but takes a highly applied managerial perspective. The course involves extensive class room discussions on the basis of business case studies. There is no student business plan or other group project. Individual assignments focus on case study memos and interactive blog-based discussion forums. Students will benefit from (but not formally required) having taken COMM 280 (Entrepreneurship). This course also prepares business students for COMM 466 (New Venture Design).

Learning objectives

This course is intended to provide students with conceptual frameworks and applied tools for managing innovative ventures. Among other things, students will learn to

  • Analyze the underlying economic forces that generate entrepreneurial opportunities.
  • Design competitive strategies for introducing innovations into markets.
  • Differentiate the distinctive roles played by start-ups and established firms in the process of commercializing innovations.
  • Appropriately plan for the protection of intellectual property.
  • Define the responsibilities of founders, managers, employees and directors within a dynamically evolving organization.
  • Negotiate roles and rewards within founder teams.
  • Learn to apply conceptual thinking for the process of entrepreneurial venture creation.

This course was formerly numbered COMM 486T. In January 2014, COMM 382 (then COMM 486T) was redesigned and renamed The Economics of Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Though some content did change, students may not retake COMM 382 (or COMM 486T in January 2014) for additional credit if they have completed the former version of the course (i.e., Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship). Both the former and current versions of the course may be used to fulfill the Year 3 requirement for the Entrepreneurship concentration.

Students who took Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship may receive credit for only one of COMM 486T and COMM 497 (in such cases, COMM 486T may not be used to satisfy the COMM 49x requirement). Students takingThe Economics of Entrepreneurship and Innovation may take COMM 497 and receive credit for both courses.

Course credits:

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