Economics of the Internet (in English)

llsms2374  2020-2021  Louvain-la-Neuve

Economics of the Internet (in English)
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the information below is subject to change until September 13, in particular that concerning the teaching mode (presential, distance or in a comodal or hybrid format).
5 credits
30.0 h
Q2
Teacher(s)
Language
English
Prerequisites
A course in Industrial Organization or in Advanced Microeconomics
In addition, this course is reserved for students with a bachelor's degree in business engineering or students with equivalent quantitative method skills
Main themes
This course aims at providing a thorough and rigorous analysis of the impacts that the Internet has on the structure of existing markets, the creation of new markets, and the strategies that economic agents (firms, consumers and regulators) deploy on these markets. The tools of the theory of industrial organization are used to understand a wide array of online market phenomena, including multi-sided platforms, impacts of 'big data' (targeted advertising and pricing, recommendation systems, and privacy), and online business models. The course makes use of case studies to make parallels between theory and reality.
Aims

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :

1

At the end of the course, students should be able to :

  • master an array of concepts from the theory of industrial organization, so as
  • understand how the Internet affects the working of markets,
  • as well as the strategies implemented by firms, consumers and regulators on these markets, and
  • to apply these theoretical concepts to the analysis of real-life situations.
 

The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.
Content
The course aims at providing a thorough and rigorous analysis of the impacts that the Internet has on the structure of existing markets, on the creation of new markets, and on the strategies that economic agents (firms, consumers and regulators) deploy on these various markets. The tools of the theory of industrial organization are used to understand a wide array of online market phenomena, including multi-sided platforms, impacts of ‘big data’ (targeted advertising and pricing, recommendation systems, privacy), net neutrality and online business models. The course makes use of case studies to make parallels between theory and reality.
Teaching methods

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the information in this section is particularly likely to change until September 13.

The theoretical material is presented during the lectures. Students are asked to work in groups and individually in order to apply the theoretical framework to specific case studies and/or to topical issues.
In-class activities
  • Lectures
  • Group discussions and work
  • Testimonies by external experts 
At home activities
  • Readings to prepare the lectures
  • Assignments
Evaluation methods

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the information in this section is particularly likely to change until September 13.

The final grade in this course is based on grades in individual coursework (45%), group coursework (25%) and final exam (30%).
  • Individual coursework. The individual coursework consists of written answers to quiz questions about the cases discussed in class. Each quiz will consist of a single question, asking for a justified opinion. Your response to each quiz should be 300-500 words long. All quizzes are required to be completed, and the mark will consist of quiz answers relating to three cases, to be selected at random at the end of the course. Please bear in mind that – in addition to being marked – the quizzes have the purpose to prepare you for the class discussion.
  • Group coursework. The task is to pick an existing product or service and to describe how the chosen product/service could be turned into a platform. The deliverables will be detailed at the start of the course.
  • Final exam. The final exam is a 1-hour, close-book, written exam covering the entirety of the course. The focus is on economic intuition and interpretation of cases, and not on mathematical reasoning. The exam will be organized in the two regular exam sessions (June and August).
  • Important note. The marks for the individual coursework are set once and for all (this part of the assessment cannot be retaken). However, students have the possibility to retake the final exam in August and, if the mark of the group coursework is below 10/20, to replace it with an individual coursework (to be handed in August).
Online resources
See the Moodle web site of the course.
Bibliography
References: Provided during the class
Lecture notes and Slides provided through Moodle
Faculty or entity


Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Sigle
Credits
Prerequisites
Aims
Master [120] : Business Engineering

Master [120] : Business Engineering