M.B.A. Courses in Information Systems
The Stern School of Business has always been a leader among management schools in teaching and research on information technology in business. In the current climate of rapid globalization and electronic commerce, an understanding of why and how information technology is driving changes in markets and businesses is essential for every business manager. Increasingly, many of the strategic and day-to-day decisions general managers face involve information technology.
The central question that Information Systems (IS) courses address is the following: Why do some organizations get value from their information technology investments while others do not? One set of courses answers this question primarily by examining how fundamental changes in market structure inducted by new technologies impact business models. The second set emphasizes the enabling potential of information technologies through increased efficiency or business intelligence. The third set focuses on the effective management of the information assets of organizations, be they internal, outsourced, or joint ventures.
The IS area provides a crucial part of business education necessary for students seeking careers in a variety of industries, from finance to management consulting. A specialization in information systems requires 9 credits in the IS courses listed on the Courses link to the left. Some of these courses also satisfy other specializations, as specified.
INFO-GB.2317 (B20.2317) Information and Internet Technologies
INFO-GB.2318 (B20.2318) Digital Strategies
INFO-GB.2350 (B20.2350) Trading Strategies and Systems
INFO-GB.3339 Being Digital: Search, Social Media, Crowdsourcing (mini)
INFO-GB.3155 (B20.3155) Global Outsourcing Strategy (also offered as INFO-GB.3355)
INFO-GB.3322 (B20.3322) Design and Development of Web and Mobile Apps
INFO-GB.3335 (B20.3335) Electronic Communities
INFO-GB.3336 (B20.3336) Data Mining for Business Intelligence
INFO-GB.3338 (B20.3338) Business Strategy for the Digital Economy
INFO-GB.3347 Digital Marketing
INFO-GB.3350 (B20.3350) Financial Information Systems
INFO-GB.3351 (B20.3351) Risk Management Systems
INFO-GB.3355 (B20.3355) Global Sourcing and Open Innovation
INFO-GB.3356 (B20.3356) Business Process Design and Implementation
INFO-GB.3362 (B20.3362) Emerging Technology and Business Innovation
Information and Internet Technologies
This course introduces the technology concepts underlying current and future information systems, with an emphasis on Internet-related technologies. It begins with the fundamentals of computer systems, databases, and networking. Special emphasis is given to technologies that underlie the World Wide Web and e-commerce, including HTML, XML, emerging interoperability standards, security, search, information retrieval, agent technologies, data warehousing, and data mining. It provides both a refresher to basic concepts as well as coverage of cutting-edge technologies. It assumes no prior knowledge of technology or programming, beyond experience with personal computers. Course requirements include homework assignments and a term paper.
The course explores the role of information technology (IT) in corporate strategy with specific attention paid to the Internet. Different Internet business models are identified and are used to explain competitive practices. Cases and lectures illustrate how technology is used to gain and sustain a competitive advantage. The course also describes different Internet technology infrastructures and identifies issues in managing a firm's technology as a strategic asset.
Trading Strategies and Systems
Prior to a major course revision, this course was offered as B20.3350 Financial Information Systems.
Course Description: As financial markets become more electronic and more liquid, a higher degree of knowledge about systems and analytics is required in order to compete. This course teaches students how to use the information emanating from the markets for decision making and building and implementing systematic computer-based models for trading. The course begins with a description of the financial markets, specifically, equity, currency, fixed income, and commodities, and the systems that enable them. We consider exchanges, ECNs, and other dealer markets and the information that emanates from them. This provides the backdrop for the bulk of the course which covers the design, evaluation and execution of trading strategies that are commonly used by professionals in the various markets. There is increasing interest in particular, on /systematic/ trading strategies and execution systems because of their scalability and transparency. The course should be of interest to students across the financial services industry. It will not transform you into a trading expert, which takes considerable effort, time, and pain. It will, however, bring the concepts of risk and return alive by working with real data and exercises, and through industry experts describing their approach to fund management and administration. More generally, the course should give you a clearer appreciation on the fact that understanding markets is a theory building exercise, where professionals spend a lot of time in understanding emerging market phenomena with the objective of translating their insights into profitable strategies. These concepts are useful regardless of your specific interest in the financial industry, i.e., whether you intend to be a trader, risk manager, controller, salesperson, or analyst.
Being Digital: Search, Social Media, Crowdsourcing
The emergence of search engines over the last decade change drastically the business landscape in many industries. Traditional business models are now completely outdated, other business models are deeply transformed, and many new models emerge now, which are based on the unprecedented access to vast amounts of information. In particular, this course will examine how search technologies affect business and society. Students will first gain an understanding of the basics of how search engines work, and then explore topics such as search ranking, spam and anti‐ efforts, search engine marketing, keyword auctions, collective intelligence, search and privacy, intellectual property, and search of blogs and online communities.
Global Outsourcing Strategy
This course focuses on professional services outsourcing and offshoring including examples from IT outsourcing (ITO), business process outsourcing (BPO), and Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) as well as on getting innovation from outside the firm by engaging consultants and using crowdsourcing websites. The course covers three broad areas: (1) global sourcing models, (2) the design and implementation of a sourcing strategy; and (3) open innovation and crowdsourcing. It draws on economics, international business, and management theories as well as real-world examples from managerial practice. The course will introduce you to frameworks for deciding which areas of activities to keep inside the firm and which to source out, how to choose the right partner and geography, how to structure contracts and relationships to achieve desired outcomes, how to manage projects and teams across organizational, national, spatial, and temporal boundaries, and, finally, how to engage the crowd to achieve best results. Students are given opportunities to research a situation of their choice in the area of global sourcing.
Design and Development of Web and Mobile Apps
Prerequisites: B20.2317 or equivalent background as well as the ability to program in some programming language.
The World Wide Web and the new technologies and standards surrounding it have dramatically changed the way systems are developed and used in organizations and markets. This course covers the issues and concepts in developing data-driven Web sites. Students evaluate a variety of different Web development approaches and architectures, including the common gateway interface model, Java, Active Server Pages, Dot Net, and Web Services. A variety of alternative development approaches are compared, looking at issues such as the development environment and the security, performance, scalability, and maintainability of systems developed with the different approaches. The class is divided into student teams. Each team implements a small system using one of the supported technologies and evaluates their experience. Students should have the ability to build a simple Web page and be proficient with common Microsoft office business applications, especially ACCESS. There is light programming, which is used as an example of how to build dynamic Web pages for B2C and B2B sites. Assignments include both Active Server Pages as well as J2EE. Unix, Windows 2000, and Linux platforms are available to host projects.
An electronic community is generally defined as a group of people organized online around a topic or issue. This course introduces student designing, building, managing, and maintaining online communities for businesses. This includes company websites, managed social media outlets such as social networks, and participating communities such as review sites. Students will identify the target audience, business objectives, strategy, and technologies needed to run a successful online community for a real business. Examples and case studies will be discussed and analyzed to identify the characteristics of effective communities and methods for evaluation. To provide cutting edge perspectives, several industry professionals will be invited to lead class discussions on special topics. The format of the course is blended; course meetings are held in the classroom in addition to scheduled real-time online meetings.
Data Mining for Business Intelligence
Businesses, governments, and society leave behind massive trails of data as a by-product of their activity. Increasingly, decision makers rely on intelligent systems to analyze these data systematically and assist them in their decision making. In many cases, automating the decision-making process is necessary because of the speed with which new data are generated. This course connects real-world data to decision making. Cases from finance, marketing, and operations are used to illustrate applications of a number of data visualization, statistical, and machine learning methods. The latter include induction, neural networks, genetic algorithms, clustering, nearest neighbor algorithms, case-based reasoning, and Bayesian learning. The use of real-world cases is designed to teach students how to avoid the common pitfalls of data mining, emphasizing that proper applications of data mining techniques is as much an art as it a science. In addition to the cases, the course features Excelbased exercises and the use of data mining software. Real-world datasets are included as an optional data mining exercise for students interested in hands-on experimentation. The course is suitable for those interested in working with and getting the most out of data as well as those interested in understanding data mining from a strategic business perspective. It will change the way you think about data in organizations.
Business Strategy for the Digital Economy
Digital markets have profound differences from traditional markets. For instance, copies of digital goods can be produced at almost zero cost, and online markets enable buyers to easily compare the offerings of many different sellers. The goal of this course is to provide students with a fundamental understanding of digital markets and to equip them with the concepts and principles necessary to understand current and future developments in digital markets; to separate the value from the hype; and to function in and take advantage of these markets. The first half of the course focuses on the markets for digital goods such as software, news, music, or movies, which can be delivered through the Internet, and covers their delivery infrastructure, pricing, digital rights management, and economics. The second half of the course focuses on online marketplaces, covering consumer search, advertising, product differentiation and customization, competitive dynamics, and the impact of the Internet on industry structure, organizations, markets, and business-to-business commerce.
Digital Marketing NEW COURSE, SPRING 2012
This core course of the Digital Marketing specialization at Stern addresses a fundamental business question of the digital age: how to increase shareholder value through digital media. This is a question that all firms are currently struggling to answer in an era where they can, for the first time, truly engage in rapid two-way conversations with potential and current customers. If firms ask themselves the question “how do we attract and retain customers?” chances that the answer to this looks very different from what it was a decade ago when the Internet was still in its infancy. At the current time, reputations can be made or destroyed within minutes, presenting great opportunity as well as a high degree of risk.
The focus of the course is on how to make firms more intelligent in how they conduct business in the digital age. This requires a fundamental understanding of the technologies and platforms that form the backbone of electronic commerce, the ability to govern and leverage large amounts of data that are generated as a by-product of electronic interactions, and sociological norms and individual preferences. Measurement plays a big role in this space. As a modern-day famously remarked “In God we believe, everyone else please bring data.”
The course will feature (at least) two instructors who will provide complementary perspectives on branding, analytics, social media, and strategy. There will be several (roughly 6) senior executives from companies providing a detailed look at what their companies are doing in the digital space. There will be several assignments and a term project for this course. The project, done in teams, will involve the assessment of the "Digital IQ" of a firm of your choice and a set of actionable recommendations for the firm based on your audit. Considering the nature of the material there is no textbook for this course. Materials will consist of readings, links to websites, and datasets.
Financial Information Systems
As financial markets become more electronic and more liquid, a higher degree of knowledge about systems and analytics is required in order to compete. This course teaches students how modern financial markets function as a network of systems and information flows, and how to use information technology for decision making in trading and managing customer relationships. Information systems serve two purposes in the financial industry. First, they facilitate markets and their supporting services such as payment, settlement, authentication, and representation. Second, they facilitate or engage in making decisions such as when and how much to invest in various instruments and markets. The first part of the course describes how systems facilitate various kinds of payment and settlement mechanisms, enable financial markets such as exchanges and ECNs, and support inter-institution communication. The second part of the course describes how traders, analysts, and risk managers use systems to cope with the vast amounts of data on the economy, markets, and customers that flow into their systems each day. It covers automated trading systems and other types of customer-oriented analytic systems that are becoming increasingly intelligent in how they make or support decisions. The course features a mix of case studies, Excel-based illustrations and assignments, and the latest industry tools. It is particularly suited for finance and marketing students interested in understanding information technologies in financial services from a practical career standpoint.
Risk Management Systems
In today’s world of complex financial engineering, rising volatility, and regulatory oversight, prudent management increasingly requires understanding, measuring, and managing risk. Banks, securities dealers, asset managers, insurance companies, and firms with significant financing operations all require real-time, enterprise-wide risk management systems for handling market, credit, and operational risk. Such systems establish standards for aggregating disparate information, including positions and market data and operational risk, calculating consistent risk measures, and creating timely reporting tools. This course is directed toward both finance and technology oriented students who are interested in understanding how large-scale risk systems need to be evaluated, acquired, architected, and managed. It identifies the business and technical issues, regulatory requirements, and techniques to measure and report risk across an organization or market.
- Global Services Sourcing Landscape: Past, Present, and Future
- Developing Managerial Competence in Global Sourcing: Strategy and Management
Some of the topics covered are:
- Historical and economic perspectives on outsourcing and offshoring.
- Trade-offs among global sourcing models (Domestic Outsourcing, Offshore outsourcing, Domestic In-sourcing Captive Models).
- Types of global outsourcing services (IT, BPO, Infrastructure)
- Developing an outsourcing strategy
- Sourcing in different geographies
- The vendor landscape (local/multinational, niche players/generalists)
- Legal Issues: Contracts, Taxes, IP, Privacy, Compliance
- Critical success factors in managing outsourcing relationships
- Managing distributed work teams: overcoming distance, time, and culture
- Innovating through global sourcing
Business Process Design and Implementation
This course focuses on the design, management, and implementation of IT-supported business processes. The evolution of information technology and the near ubiquity of the Internet give business firms the opportunity to completely redesign their business processes, to develop systems faster, and to implement systems in entirely new ways. Topics covered include business process analysis and design, implementation, change management, and performance measurement systems. Relevant technologies include Web-based application service providers, workflow management systems, knowledge management systems, and enterprise systems. Students learn how to analyze a business problem, design new business processes, and manage the implementation process. They also gain an understanding of the technology support structure required for successful implementation of organizational and interorganizational processes.
Emerging Technology and Business Innovation
This course provides a thorough examination of several key technologies that enable major advances in e-business and other high-tech industries, and explores the new business opportunities that these technologies create. For each of these technologies, it provides an overview of the "space" corresponding to this class, examines who the major players are, and how they use these technologies. Students then study the underlying technologies; examine the business problems to which they can be applied; and discuss how these problems are solved. Key companies in the "spaces" created by these technologies are also studied: what these companies do; which technologies they use; how these technologies support their critical applications; and how these companies compete and collaborate among themselves. Moreover, the course examines possible future directions and trends for the technologies being studied; novel applications that they enable; and how high-tech companies can leverage applications of these technologies. This is an advanced course, and it is intended for the students who have already acquired basic knowledge of technical concepts and who want to advance their knowledge of technologies beyond the basics and to further develop an understanding of the dynamics of the "spaces" associated with these technologies.