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As 2014 winds to a close, we thank you again for your ongoing support. Please know that every contribution makes a difference in growing our global presence and reputation. We invite you to make a year-end gift in support of the school in the area of your choosing. Learn more.

 


With sincerest thanks and warmest wishes for the New Year!

Economics / Public Policy

 

Overview

 

Microeconomics, macroeconomics and public policy are fundamental building blocks for the study of business and management, and it is essential for managers to understand the economic and political contexts in which they operate. For these reasons, economics and public policy are key components of the MBA program at The Paul Merage School of Business. Our area offers three core courses and a number of electives focusing on different economic and political issues that are relevant to managers. These courses include several that are consistent with the school's strategic focus on information technology and health care.

 

Course Descriptions

 

MBA Core Classes
     Microeconomics for Management
     Macroeconomics for Management
     Business and Government
MBA Electives
     Managing Nonprofits
     Valuing Cultural Diversity
     US Health Policy
     Economics of Health Care Services
     Understanding Managed Care
     Economics of Strategy
     Development of New Ventures in Health Care Services
     Understanding Managed Care
     International Trade and Finance
     IT in Health Care
     Management of Biomedical Devices and Technologies
     Macroecon of Managing the Business Cycle
     Managing a Diverse Workforce
     Managing Organizational Incentives
     US Health Policy
     Applied Game Theory for Managers
     New Models in Health Care
     China vs. India
     HCEMBA-Current Issues in Health Care
     Health Care Entrepreneurship: From Physician to CEO

 

Course descriptions for the PhD program may be found on the PhD website, and the Undergraduate business classes may be found through UCI’s course catalogue.

 

Faculty

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dennis Aigner (Professor Emeritus)

PhD, University of California, Berkeley

Key Areas - Corporate environmental management; international economics; trade and environment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Abby Alpert

PhD, University of Maryland

Key Areas – Health economics; public finance

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paul Feldstein (Professor Emeritus)

PhD, University of Chicago

Key Areas - Economics of healthcare; reasons for employees switching healthcare plans; measuring health plan performance by examining breast cancer outcomes by stage at detection, treatment and survival

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mireille Jacobson

PhD, Harvard University

Key Areas – Impact of incentives in healthcare markets on physician, hospital, and patient behavior; impact of medicare payment policies on physician treatment decisions; impact of health insurance on medical expenditure risk and financial strain

 

 

 

 

 

 

Richard McKenzie (Professor Emeritus)

PhD, Virginia Polytechnic Institute

Key Areas - Monopoly in economic theory and law; pricing strategies; rational and irrational behavior in economic theory; Microsoft antitrust case; public policies relating to digital goods; orphanages and public policy relating to foster care

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peter Navarro

PhD, Harvard University

Key Areas – Macroeconomic analysis of the business environment and financial markets for investors and corporate executives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Andy Policano

PhD, Brown University

Key Areas - Financial institutions and markets; macroeconomics;  monetary theory; business school trends

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Judy Rosener (Professor Emerita)

PhD, Claremont Graduate School

Key Areas – Men and women at work; cultural diversity; business and government; managing nonprofits

 

 

For the latest public research in Economics and Public Policy, click here.

 

Visiting & Affiliated Faculty and Researchers

 

 

MBA Core Classes


204A Microeconomics for Management
This course provides the basic tools for analyzing economic decisions of consumers and firms, the determinants and consequences of market structure and issues of market failure. Topics include introduction to demand and supply analysis, production and cost theory, perfect competition, monopoly, imperfect competition, and introductory game theory. A knowledge of algebra and elementary calculus is assumed.  Prerequisite: recommend Calculus.

204B Macroeconomics for Management
This course focuses on the use of macroeconomic analysis to manage the business cycle and other macroeconomic shocks for competitive advantage. Such “business cycle-sensitive” management is explored within the context of all major functional and strategic areas of the modern organization, including marketing, operations management, HRM, merger and acquisition activity, and capital financing and expenditures. Emphasis is on both a mastery of economic indicators and forecasting tools as well as the application of macroeconomic analysis for strategic and tactical planning. A multidisciplinary, integrative, and experiential approach is used.  Prerequisite: 204A


206 Business and Government
The course designed to introduce students to the many non-market issues that affect today's managers, such as: environmental protection, health and safety, regulation, intellectual property protection, antitrust, lobbying, political institutions, and corporate social responsibility. The course takes an interdisciplinary approach that draws from traditions in economics, political science, philosophy, public policy, and law.

 

MBA Electives

  

261A Physicians, Executives, and Healthcare Law

The course, offered alternating years, is an elective focused on health for the UCI MBA students.  It is designed to bring to the classroom major healthcare law issues.  In addition to didactic instructor presentations, guest lecturers are brought to the classroom for presentations and discussions.  This class is complementary to other management courses in competitive strategy, negotiations, economics and public policy, and decision analysis.  Prerequisite:  201A

 

261B Physicians, Executives, and Health Leadership

The course, offered alternative years, is an elective focused on health for the UCI MBA students.  It is designed to bring to the classroom major healthcare leadership and management issues from both the executive and physician perspective. In addition to didactic instructor presentations, guest lecturers are brought to the classroom for presentations and discussions.  Included are the concepts of Emotional Intelligence and Meyers Briggs Personality Inventory.  This class is complementary to other management courses in competitive strategy, negotiations, economics and public policy, and decision analysis. Prerequisite:  201A.

 

262 Managing Nonprofits
Designed for students interested in the management of nonprofit organizations. Examines similarities and differences between for-profit and nonprofit organizations, major management issues specifically associated with nonprofits, and exposes students to career opportunities in the nonprofit sector.
 

263 Valuing Cultural Diversity
Provides students with an opportunity to examine their own feelings, attitudes, and behavior about people who are different from them, and how these feelings could affect their ability to manage effectively in an increasingly diverse work environment.
 

264 US Health Policy
Course provides an overview of US health policy with a particular emphasis on current policy developments and debates.  Students will be introduced to the basic tools of policy analysis and will apply them to health policy issues.  Prerequisite: 204A.
 

266 Economics of Health Care Services
This course uses the basic tools of microeconomics to study the organization and delivery of medical care services in the United States. The economic criteria of efficiency and equity are used to analyze the performance of health care markets, government programs and public policies affecting both.  Prerequisite: 204A.
 

290 Understanding Managed Care
A special topics course.

 

268 Economics of Strategy
This course applies key concepts of game theory to the analysis of the strategic behavior of profit-maximizing firms.  Topics to be covered include: simultaneous move games, sequential games, credibility and commitment, repeated games, pure and mixed strategies, signaling, and screening.  The first part of the course will be mainly lecture and problem sets.  Students will present group projects in the final weeks.  Prerequisite:  204A.

 

290 The Business of Medicine

tba.

 

290 Development of New Ventures in Health Care Services
The emphasis of the course is to introduce the student to the process of developing a medical services company.  The use of case studies and outside lecturers, e.g., entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, are designed to provide the student with knowledge, skills, and insights into the entrepreneurial process as it applies to health care delivery.

 

290 Global Economy

The purpose of this course is to provide an analytical framework for understanding changing macroeconomic conditions in the world economy. Issues related to economic growth, inflation, interest rates, exchange rates, global competitiveness, unemployment, and the trade account will be discussed. Understanding the global economy is fundamentally important for decision makers and business leaders. The main objective of the course is to provide students with the skills to critically assess how developments in the world economy affect the business environment relevant to their specific industry.
 

290 International Trade and Finance
This course examines basic theory and policy applications in international economics.  Topics include the sources of trade, the gains from trade, trade policy, trade relations between countries, the balance of payments, determinants of exchange rates, macroeconomic linkages between economies, currency crises, and the international financial system, among others, time permitting.

 

290 IT in Health Care
Information technology plays a central role in prominent strategies aimed at controlling health care costs and improving quality.  The challenges associated with achieving these goals arise from economic and organizational factors that are generic to the adoption of new technologies as well as unique institutional features of the health care industry.  This course provides an overview of these issues, with an emphasis on both the strategic decisions facing firms and the implications of those decisions for the health care system and social welfare.  Cases studied will focus on technologies that impact health care providers, payers and consumer/patients.

 

290 Management of Biomedical Devices and Technologies
A special topics course.
 

290 Macroeconomics of Managing the Business Cycle
This course will examine the role of business cycle “literacy” and macroeconomic analysis in the strategic management of the business cycle.  Students will survey and discuss the existing literature as well as perform their own case analyses in an integrative and experiential format. Topics will include: Efficacy of various business cycle forecasting tools and techniques, the role of industry cycles and sector patterns in strategic planning, strategic and tactical approaches to business management across the functional disciplines (including human resource management, marketing, capital financing, the timing of acquisitions and divestitures), macroeconomic leadership within the organization, and organizational structure and design for the business cycle-sensitive firm.
 

290 Managing a Diverse Workforce
In this course students will explore why managing diversity (gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, race) is a “bottom line” issue.  They will learn how organizations are addressing the challenge of managing in a diverse workforce.  They will also examine their own biases and prejudices which could positively or negatively impact their managerial effectiveness.  In essence they will become equipped to leverage all kinds of human capital needed in a global economy characterized by cultural diversity.
 

290 Managing Organizational Incentives
This course applies the tools of microeconomic analysis in an effort to assess the efficiency of decision-structures within firms.   The course will address such issues as what "firms" are, why they exist, and  the inevitable tension between welfare and shareholder wealth.  The incentive systems established within firms that seek to align the interest of workers with the interests of owners will be the central concern of the course.  Prerequisite: Management 204A

290 Applied Game Theory for Managers
The objective of this course is to teach the basic tools of game theory and its usefulness for managers when considering rival responses in decision-making. The course proceeds by first considering interactions among rival firms in product markets. This analysis will provide students with a richer understanding of competition within different market settings. We will then study how game theory concepts are also useful to managers when dealing with other parties such as suppliers, employees, or creditors. Examples, readings from the business press and numerical problems will be used to illustrate various points in the course.
 

290 New Models in Health Care
A special topics course.
 

290 China vs. India
This is a project-oriented course aimed at discerning critical differences in the economic and political development of China and India.  A critical task will be for students to evaluate the business models of entities in each of the two countries.  Other tasks will be to analyze the extent of government involvement in the development of export industries, to make some assessment as to which country is likely to enjoy the most sustainable level of development over time, and to develop student awareness of the different types of products and services being developed within the countries and which areas of the various countries specialize in what.  The course instructor practices an integrative, experiential, and multidisciplinary approach to teaching.  This requires extensive project and team work during the course as well as extensive class presentations on a weekly basis.  It is an interactive rather than a straight lecture experience.
 

290 HCEMBA-Current Issues in Health Care
Variable topics course taught in summer, description tba.
 

290 Health Care Entrepreneurship: From Physician to CEO
As the business of medicine becomes increasingly complex, it is crucial for physicians who aspire to be entrepreneurs to integrate business knowledge with clinical care.  This course is structured to build business development skills to create and manage a medical practice, or a science-based enterprise.  The class will center on the value proposition of small ventures in a large pharmaceutical /healthcare provider dominated industry, and how one can maximize the potential of such an undertaking. Course objectives include assessment of the viability of new ventures, examining basic elements of licensing and joint venture agreements, and understanding the strategy of institutions and investors in creating new healthcare entities. Essentially, in this class we will use real life examples and discuss winning (and failed) strategies to learn how to transform a good idea into a successful business. Topics will include healthcare technology integration, intellectual property protection, venture capital funding, marketing, advertising and negotiating.  The course will be case-based, with a number of guest speakers from the medical, legal, pharmaceutical and venture capital industry.


290 Managing in a Global Economy

The purpose of this course is to provide an analytical framework for understanding changing macroeconomic conditions in the world economy. Issues related to economic growth, inflation, interest rates, exchange rates, global competitiveness, unemployment, and the trade account will be discussed. Understanding the global economy is fundamentally important for decision makers and business leaders. The main objective of the course is to provide students with the skills to critically assess how developments in the world economy affect the business environment relevant to their specific industry.

 

290 Physicians as Medical Directors in HC

tba.

 

290 Physicians, Healthcare, and the Law

tba.

 

290 Physicians, Executives, and Healthcare Leadership

tba.

 

291 Applied Econometrics and Research Methods

A special topics course.