Science, Technology and Innovations: Markets, Firms and Policies (752N1)

15 credits, Level 7 (Masters)

Autumn teaching

The aim of this module is to introduce you to an ongoing tradition of research on innovation and the various analytical concepts and theories that are used in current academic, management and policy debates. It will explore the processes underlying knowledge accumulation and innovative activity within the global economy and review the historical and contemporary emergence of current innovation systems in both developed and developing country contexts. This includes analysis of the science system, technology, the management of innovation, the theory of the firm, the basis for public policy, environmental analysis, and innovation systems approaches.

The module has a key focus on developing understanding that contributes towards practical analysis of innovation policy and management problems, and therefore provides a range of analytical frameworks for understanding and exploring the nature of public policy and its influence on the operations of business firms and other organisations. These frameworks include orthodox economics, evolutionary economics, science and technology studies and history.

The module aims to develop you understanding of the economic perspective on issues of science and technology management and policy and helps you develop skills in using economic measures and indicators that inform business and public policy. 

By the end of this module you will be able to:

  • distinguish several different schools of thought in economics by identifying their underlying assumptions and methods of reasoning 
  • explain the role of innovation from the perspectives of firm and individual choice and relate innovation to productivity, long-term economic growth, and competitiveness. 
  • identify sources of market dysfunction or failure including monopoly power, co-ordination failure, and principal-agent problems and understand the interventions or rule-setting that may prove useful in remedying these problems 
  • explain the consequences of globalisation for the international division of labour and the possible effects that this might have on localisation of economic activities 
  • demonstrate knowledge of technology and innovation system concepts and an understanding of their application in different technological, spatial, national and international contexts. 
  • demonstrate the analytical skills required to identify the interactions among key actors in technology and innovation systems, and to identify the main interactions running through these systems to link public policy and the innovative activities of business firms and other organisations. 
  • demonstrate the practical skills to clearly and concisely write an account of selected aspects of the innovation systems described above. 

Teaching

67%: Lecture
33%: Seminar

Assessment

60%: Coursework (Essay)
40%: Examination (Unseen examination)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 150 hours of work. This breaks down into about 33 hours of contact time and about 117 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

This module is running in the academic year 2020/21. We also plan to offer it in future academic years. It may become unavailable due to staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of such changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.

Courses

This module is offered on the following courses: