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The Knowledge Economy
This module builds on the internship all Arts and Sciences students undertake before their final year.
External speakers and UCL staff with roles outside UCL - in industry and the non-profit sector – will lead sessions on the way knowledge is produced, applied and valued in business and global contexts.
The module is structured largely around seminars, workshops and activities.
Students will engage with the process of how to apply their learning on Arts and Sciences to the next step in their career. Particular emphasis is placed on the student’s individual interdisciplinary experience in combining Arts/Humanities and Sciences/Engineering. Practical sessions in CV building and interview techniques are also offered.
- To engage students in a real-world consultancy project, sourced by UCL Advances and involving external partners.
- To introduce student to ideas and theories about current and future work and working practices, with a particular emphasis on the role of networks.
These parts of the course run in parallel and there will be assessments based on both aims.
The first part of the taught course is about the Knowledge-based Economy and the role of networks in it. The second half looks at the sociology of work, contemporary organisational and working practices and ideas on the future of work.
Students will be asked to reflect on both the work placements from which they have recently returned and some of the key attributes/skills they have learned in the Core of the degree and their Pathways.
The results of such reflection will be manifested by pieces of writing, video work, group project work or students themselves leading seminars.
Lectures will be delivered by Peter Antonioni (Management Science), Carl Gombrich (BASc) and invited guest lecturers. Seminars will be run by PGTAs.
Early in the course, and in conjunction with UCL Advances, small consultancy projects will be pitched by employers to the students. Students will then pitch back to the UCL teaching team and will be selected in small teams (‘mini consultancies’) to work on their projects.
For the ‘practical part’ of the course, students must contact the business (‘clients’) at least once a week to provide progress reports.
The themes of the lectures are as follows:
- Lecture 1: Course introduction and overview
- Lecture 2: The Economy of Knowledge: why knowledge-based economies turn towards being like a network
- Lecture 3: Scale dominance
- Lecture 4: Schumpeter and organisation
- Lecture 5: Christensen and disruption; Drawing these two theories together: signalling and campaigning
- Lecture 6: Stakeholder management
- Lecture 7: Digital Identities. Sessions by Abhay Adhikari, independent expert
- Lecture 8: Expertise – Harry Collins’ interactional expertise.
- Lecture 9: ‘Depressing Week’ – ‘bullshit jobs’ (technical term http://www.strikemag.org/bullshit-jobs/); Tainter and the collapse of complex societies
- Lecture: 10 Leadership and Networks.
The course runs for three hours per week in Term 1 of Year 3 as follows:
1-2pm on Tuesdays
||12-1pm on Tuesdays or 11am-12pm on Wednesdays or 11am-12pm on Thursdays|
* Students are automatically allocated to a seminar class, so it is not possible to select one
- Coursework – 30%
Two essays (1,500 words each) worth 15% each, the first is based on weeks 1-5 of lectures, the 2nd essay on weeks 6-10 of lectures.
Consultancy Project – 60%
The consultancy project (c 20 pages) will comprise:
- a presentation,
- a group report, and
- feedback on student’s engagement from the client.
- Vlog from internship – 10%
This will be a short narrative of your observations during the internship, to include some specific comments related to organisational structure, commercial awareness, working culture etc. It will be submitted during the first week of term prior to the start of the course.
Students on the Study Abroad programme will be advised to submit their vlog at the same time and prior their departure to their host institution.