Technology Innovation, Adoption, and Diffusion

Credits: 3


Exposes students to concepts in technology innovation, markets for information technology goods and services, and adoption dynamics within organizations for new products and processes, and therefore should prove useful in a variety of student careers. Assignments emphasize written and oral communication skills. There is an opportunity for a self-selected project to customize the course to particular student interests. Skill acquisition and improvement goals for the course include case analysis, short analytic writing, technology research, and long-form writing. Technological innovation is the origin of what the economist Joseph Schumpeter termed the "creative destruction" of capitalism (1942). This is the dynamic process by which prior technologies, and their accompanying industrial structures and associated leading firms, are replaced by successive generations of technologies. This is a constantly ongoing process that provides both opportunities for new entrants and threats to existing firms in the market. Students are likely to need a thorough understanding of this process throughout their professional careers.

Topics typically covered include:

  • Innovation sources and management
  • S-curves and product life cycles
  • Dominant design and paradigm shifts
  • Disruptive and discontinuous innovation
  • Innovation in design
  • Network effects
  • Standards
  • Complementary goods
  • Intellectual property
  • Partnerships, alliances, and value chain ownership
  • Environment/government regulations
  • Organizational assimilation of technology
  • Lead-user design.

Prerequisite: None.