Operations and Information Management | Babson College
The Course Catalog includes course descriptions of all courses offered by F. W. Olin Graduate School of Business. For descriptions of the courses offered in the current or upcoming semesters, please see our Course Listing.
Graduate Course Catalog
Operations and Information Management
DES7500 - RE-IMAGINING X
RE-IMAGINING XDES7500: Re-Imagining X 3 graduate elective credits Over the past two decades, changes in political, technological and cultural arenas have dramatically increased the need for companies, organizations, and individuals to innovate. In the future, inventing, developing, and implementing new solutions, be they products, processes, services, initiatives, business models, policies or entire organizations, will require at the minimum two sets of skills. First, with many saturated markets and solutions that are only superficially beneficial for users and consumers, a deeper and more empathetic understanding of user needs and aspirations is critical. Second, technological and political developments have made the world a much more interconnected place. People and devices today are much more connected than in the past. Similarly, many problems have grown in complexity, and require involvement of various stakeholder groups and the consideration of how they might be affected. As a result, a systems understanding is the second required skill set. In this course, Human-Centered Design and its recent version Design Thinking, coupled with a System Thinking perspective, will provide the mindset and the tools that participants learn to apply, and with which they will work to invent and develop new opportunities. The course combines reflective reading and case discussions with hands-on in-depth project work for students to learn and develop the relevant skills along with the new opportunities. Prerequisites: None
MBA7502 - FUTURE LAB: COMPLEX PROBLEM SOLVING FOR SOCIAL IMPACT
FUTURE LAB: COMPLEX PROBLEM SOLVING FOR SOCIAL IMPACT
MBA7503: Future Lab: Complex Problem Solving for Social Impact
3 elective credits
Sinan Erzurumlu, Faculty Director at FutureLab & Prof. of Innovation and Ops Mngment
Cheryl Kiser, Executive Director, The Lewis Institute & Babson Social Innovation Lab
FutureLab combines the entrepreneurial mindset and social design principles to engage students, organizations and community to explore pioneering entrepreneurial challenges and create economic and social/environmental progress for selected partner organizations. The FutureLab is a discovery and action-learning lab. It involves experiential learning in service to address challenges in real time and in real contexts. As a FutureLab student partner, you will collaborate with an ensemble of faculty members and partner organizations to explore their challenges and develop solutions for social impact at scale. You should be prepared to engage in an active learning environment and apply principles of complex problem solving for social impact.
Given the increasing preference shown by employers for demonstrated problem solving experience, this lab will provide you with the opportunity to add a very realistic problem solving experience to the portfolio of qualifications on your resumes. We envision regular, ongoing interaction with our partners, with details to be determined in collaboration with these partners. You will gain skills in creativity, critical thinking, innovation, complex problem solving, social change, entrepreneurial leadership and influence. Depending on the demands of the project, you will apply these skills towards framing the problem and co-creating solutions with community and partner organization.
The 14-week lab experience is designed for active learning, experimenting, generating and launching an implementation plan. Student partners of prior semesters addressed various problems, such as improving the efficiency and effectiveness of key patient care processes for a major academic medical center and analyzing the mobility challenges of older adults for governmental organizations. It is important to know that this is a team-based engagement and anticipate the flexible investment of time and effort that high-performance teams and deep work often demands. This Lab requires a high willingness to work in a flexible timeframe and framework. Student partners may be interviewed prior to class by the Lab faculty team.
MBA7503 - FUTURE LAB:MOBILITY INNOVATION
FUTURE LAB:MOBILITY INNOVATION
MBA 7503 Future Lab: Design-Led Innovation"
3 elective credits
The FutureLab is a discovery and action-learning lab. It involves experiential learning in service to address challenges in real time and in real contexts. As a FutureLab student partner, you will collaborate with an ensemble of faculty members and partner organizations to explore their challenges and develop solutions for social impact at scale. You should be prepared to engage in self-paced team projects in an active learning environment. You will combine the entrepreneurial mindset and apply principles of complex problem solving for social impact.
Given the increasing preference shown by employers for demonstrated problem solving experience, this lab will provide you with the opportunity to add a very realistic problem solving experience to the portfolio of qualifications on your resumes. We envision regular, ongoing interaction with our partners, with details to be determined in collaboration with these partners. You will gain skills in creativity, critical thinking, innovation, complex problem solving, social change, and entrepreneurial leadership and influence. Depending on the demands of the project, you will apply these skills towards framing the problem and co-creating solutions with community and partner organization.
The 14-week lab experience is designed for active learning, experimenting, generating and launching an implementation plan. Student partners of prior semesters addressed various problems, such as improving the efficiency and effectiveness of key patient care processes for a major academic medical center and analyzing the mobility challenges of older adults for governmental organizations. The focus of the Lab is going to be on mobility and connectivity challenges. It is important to know that this is a team-based engagement and anticipate the flexible investment of time and effort that high-performance teams and deep work often demands. This Lab requires a high willingness to work in a flexible time frame and framework. Student partners may be interviewed prior to class by the Lab faculty team.
MBA7507 - ENTREPRENEURIAL LEADERSHIP & INNOVATION
ENTREPRENEURIAL LEADERSHIP & INNOVATION
MBA7507: Entrepreneurial Leadership and Innovation
Entrepreneurial Leaders change the dynamics of competition in a market or bring new value to society. Entrepreneurial leadership is context independent. One can find entrepreneurial leaders inside a small, medium, large, non-profit, or a govt. enterprise. One does not have to be a genius to impact change when given a lot of resources. Many times, entrepreneurial leaders impact change with little resources. Innovation is the weapon of the entrepreneurial leader. Without entrepreneurial leadership, there is no entrepreneurship. Without entrepreneurial leadership, there is no innovation. While invention and creativity could be an individual or small group activity, innovation is for the most part is a large group activity. For this to happen, entrepreneurial leaders assemble resources by energizing, engaging and enabling disparate groups and entities. Entrepreneurial Leadership is different from Charismatic Leadership, Ideological Leadership, Servant Leadership, Evocative Leadership and other forms of leadership. It is much closer to Transformational Leadership, Situational Leadership and Crisis Leadership. It has its genesis in Entrepreneurship and Military Leadership. This course will delve deep into the concepts, methods and tools of entrepreneurial leadership and innovation by examining case studies from a variety of industries: Mining, Personal Computers, Steel, Automotive, Smartphones, Apparel, Newspaper/Media, Malnutrition, Medical Devices, Healthcare Services, Food, Software, Financial Services, Airlines, Govt. Services, U.S. Navy and others.
MBA7515 - ENTERPRISE 2.0
MBA7515 Enterprise 2.0 Building Social Networks to Improve Business Performance
3 credit blended elective
Meeting Dates: F2F days: September 15th, October 6th and October 20th 8:30 - 4:30PM. The other weeks will be asynchronous, online weeks where there is no specific meeting time.
Enterprise 2.0 is the term to describe organizations that use strategies, business practices, and technologies that enable emergent collaboration. Many organizations are now interested in capturing, distributing and applying the knowledge of their employees for business benefit. Also, companies need to keep track of knowledge outside of their corporate walls, for example, understanding market trends and being aware of what customers are saying about their products. Ultimately, the goal of Enterprise 2.0 is to break down traditional information silos and to allow employees and managers to tap into the right expertise when they need it.
A major objective of this course is to understand social networks using social network analysis (SNA). SNA is a methodology to analyze the structure of social networks, or the people-to-people connections in organizations. SNA is an increasingly popular application used by both management consultants and internal organizational practices (e.g., Marketing, HR, R&D, and HR-Talent Management) to understand information flows inside and outside a company. The SNA results in both visualizations as well as metrics to determine: where information silos exist in the organization and people's position in the _informal_ structure of the organization, such as central, peripheral, and broker positions (i.e., connecting different subgroups). From this analysis, we can then determine knowledge management/talent management/marketing interventions that improve collaboration and business practices. We will also discuss how SNA techniques can be used to analyze employee connections through social media (e.g., who is blogging and responding to other employees' blogs, following other employees' social profile, etc.) Students will gain valuable _hands-on_ experience using and applying SNA from their group project.
Finally, we will explore how the latest social collaboration tools, including social networking platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, and applications such as blogs, wikis, and bookmarking/tagging tools, are being adapted and used by organizations, for example, to leverage the _wisdom of crowds_. Through case studies, group projects, and hands-on exercises, we will discuss the value proposition to companies and their employees from using social media. For example, groups will come up with a social media strategy for an organization, including providing metrics on how to evaluate the success or _ROI_ of their strategy.
This is a _blended_ course - consisting of both face-to-face and on-line classes. The course will consist of lecture material, discussion of real-world case studies, and interactive group exercises. Your grade will consist of three equal components: class participation, group projects, and an individual paper.
Prerequisites : none
MBA7545 - ANALYTICAL MANAGERS AND ORGANIZATION
ANALYTICAL MANAGERS AND ORGANIZATIONMBA7545 Analytical Managers and Organizations 3 credit blended elective This course is designed to teach MBA students what it means to be an analytical manager, and how to build the capabilities required to be a highly analytical organization. It addresses the non-statistical topics in analytical decision-making at the individual level (including framing the problem and communicating the results), which should complement statistically-oriented courses at Babson. It also addresses the key factors (in the DELTTA modeldata, enterprise, leadership, targets, technology, and analysts) necessary to succeed with analytics at the organizational level. It incorporates new course content specifically relevant to big data and analytics based on it. The course specifically delves into how both large and entrepreneurial organizations are addressing big data and analytics, and focuses in particular on how digital and online firms use and manage analytics. We'll discuss various industries' and functions' use of analytics, but the only one addressed in any depth is web analytics for digitally-oriented businesses.
MBA7604 - SPECIAL TOPICS: ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN A DIGITAL WORLD
SPECIAL TOPICS: ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN A DIGITAL WORLDMBA 7604: Special Topics: Entrepreneurship in a Digital World Digital technologies, processes and business models are impacting all aspects of businesses today, from startups to large organizations that need to practice corporate intrapreneurship. This course will focus on how digital strategies, tactics, and tools can be leveraged by today's entrepreneurial leaders to innovate, grow, and renew initiatives in their organizations. We will study how digital platforms can be used to scale operations, improve decision-making, and enable new business models to grow customers and revenue. Topics will include cloud computing platforms that focus on operations, employee collaboration, customer relationships, and machine-to-machine connections such as the Internet of Things (IoT) to capture, analyze, and share data and insights. New digital business models will be explored that will inform corporate strategy and business opportunities. Students will gain hands-on experience using popular data analytics and visualization tools, such as Tableau, to explore opportunities, gather insights, and make more informed decisions. The course will expose students to emerging technology enablers, such as machine learning and augmented/virtual reality tools, and effectively identify the role they can play in the organization's growth and renewal. Finally, we will discuss digital development and implementation strategies, including agile methods, to deliver digital technologies and gain adoption throughout the organization.
MBA9525 - LEADING INNOV:GORILLAS, CHIMP&MONKEYS
LEADING INNOV:GORILLAS, CHIMP&MONKEYSMBA9525: Leading Innovation at Gorillas, Chimps & Monkeys (Formally: MOB9525) 1.5 credit intensive elective There are only two ways to grow: M&A and Organic. Organic Growth is much much much more difficult than M&A. Growth is the only common thing that all types of firms -- start-ups, small, medium, large, family-businesses, non-profits -- have in common. However, how they go about achieving growth could be very very different. This course focuses on how innovation is a mechanism for growth in a variety of firms and situations. If you are going to work for a Gorilla / Chimp (Large / Medium Business): M&A, incremental innovation, risk management and bureaucracy building are all skills and capabilities that are in abundance inside large enterprises. However, organic growth, radical innovation, uncertainty navigation, and entrepreneurial leadership skills and capabilities are all scarcities within large enterprises. Hence, many medium- and large-sized enterprises are creating internal innovation leaders who are able to drive organic growth by building innovation sandboxes and creating and nurturing a culture of innovation. If you are going to start or work at a Monkey (Startup / Small Business): Large firms routinely don't want to cater to certain markets and certain customers. They are very picky in terms of what margins they want and will protect. So, large enterprises do not pursue many opportunities. These spurned opportunities are precisely the ones that start-ups and small businesses should go after. Having a clear understanding of how large firms make their decisions in terms of markets and margins will improve the opportunities for start-ups and small businesses. Also, start-ups and small firms are notoriously lacking in resources. Creativity and Innovation is the primary weapon of the entrepreneur to compete against the Gorillas & Chimps. This course will provide several strategies for start-ups and small businesses to compete against the larger enterprises. If you are from / going-to-join a family business: All family business leaders have to comprehend that Strategy, Innovation and Leadership cannot be discussed independently and in isolation. They are all highly intertwined. At the heart of this triangle sits an even more difficult concept called "Culture." Depending on the generational, technological and socio-economic changes that are underway in their countries / industries / businesses, family business leaders have to navigate VUCAH (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, ambiguity & hyperconnectedness) through a careful combination of multi-dexterous skills in terms of Strategy, Innovation, Leadership & Culture. This course will help you gain those multi-dexterous skills.
MIS6110 - MSEL MIS
MSEL MISMIS6110 Information Technology This course prepares students to become digital innovatorsglobal entrepreneurs and business leaders who can make strategic business decisions involving data, digital products, and digital services; experiment with information technologies and platforms; build and work in diverse teams; and create social, environmental and economic value from data in a business context.
MIS6300 - PROGRAMMING FOR BUSINESS ANALYTICS
PROGRAMMING FOR BUSINESS ANALYTICS
MIS6300: Programming for Business Analytics
(Previously title: Information Technology) - 3 credits
This course will introduce fundamental programming concepts, including data structures, networked application program interfaces, and relational database using the Python programming language. In addition, students will apply statistical, machine learning, information visualization, text analysis, and social network analysis techniques through popular python toolkits such as pandas, matplotlib, scikit-learn, nltk, and networkx to gain insight into their data. At the end, this course will guide students through a project to design and create their own applications for data retrieval, processing, and visualization.
Prerequisite: Admission in to the MSBA program. CAM students should contact Graduate Academic Services to pursue enrollment in this course. MBA students will be required to review approximately 2 hours of pre-work videos.
MIS7200 - GLOBAL CONNECTIONS THROUGH TECHNOLOGY
GLOBAL CONNECTIONS THROUGH TECHNOLOGYMIS7200 Global Connections through Technology Global Connections through Technology (GCTT) - This course is an information technology course that educates knowledge workers to use information and technology to think and act entrepreneurially to create and sustain social and economic value in a global environment
MIS7501 - INTRO TO DATABASE MANAGEMENT
INTRO TO DATABASE MANAGEMENT
MIS7501: Introduction to Database Management
1.5 elective credit
SQL forms the cornerstone of all relational database operations. The ability to write the SQL language is essential for those who develop database applications. This course provides a solid foundation of the SQL programming language that enables students to build, query and manipulate databases. Working in SQL Server Management, the students will be actively engaged in a hands-on classroom experience. The list of topics include: Understand entity-relationship modeling (ER Model) at the conceptual level; Data design terminology, SQL Basics, Joins and Views, Conditional Logic, Procedures, Functions.
MIS7505 - DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION
DIGITAL TRANSFORMATIONMIS7505: Digital Transformation 3 elective credits The digitalization of products, processes, and business models is accelerating the rate of change in every industry and how organizations deliver value. While the majority of organizations report having initiated digital transformation efforts, studies highlight that fewer than 30% of these digital initiatives deliver positive results. However, no single digital transformation strategy applies to every company's situation, as digital transformation depends as much on the business context and organizational design, culture, and talent as it does on digital technologies. In this course, we will use the case method to explore digital transformation efforts for a number of organizations across a variety of industries, and learn about the emerging technologies (e.g., AI, blockchain, extended reality, robotics) driving their transformation. Students will gain critical-thinking skills, work in groups, learn to apply different perspectives and frameworks to analyze complex business scenarios, and practice communication skills. Case analyses and in-class discussions will be complemented with a digital transformation consulting project. Prerequisites: OIM7800 or OPS7200
MIS7525 - AGILE EXPERIMENTATION
MIS7525: Agile Experimentation
1.5 elective credits
Agile Experimentation (AgileEx) is an experiential course in which teams of students use agile methodologies to design and prototype viable Internet of Things (IoT) innovations combining hardware and software components. The course involves:
Practicing Agile/SCRUM project management methodologies and software, and learning how to scale Agile environments from small startups to large organizations
Designing and building IoT (or wearable) devices with sensors and actuators, and programming hardware (i.e., Arduino boards)
Designing digital interfaces and processes (e.g., app mockups, process diagrams) with software tools
Running experiments and surveying customers to test hypotheses and iterate in the development of a prototype
Building an innovation with a clear value proposition
Learning about emerging technologies
Presenting your work in a final pitch that showcases your prototype and its market viability
The course aims to train business graduates who are confident life-long learners of technology, can work in Agile environments, and can participate in the development of innovative technological solutions that integrate hardware and software components.
The course does not require programming, Agile, or software/hardware prototyping experience.