Curriculum

Curriculum

The RSM MSc in Business Information Management programme is one academic year’s duration. Core courses are compulsory and will be offered during the autumn semester (22 ECTS). Master electives (18 ECTS) are offered during the spring semester, of which one elective can be chosen from another MSc programme. It is also possible to replace one elective with an internship or business project. During the year, students work on a master thesis project (20 ECTS).

Please note that certain electives may be very popular. Although we can place most students in the elective(s) of their choice, there are no guaranteed places.

    • This course will be devoted to the study of the strategic use of information, and provide you with the understanding of the role of information, the closely related role of information technology, major developments of e-commerce, and their implications on economics, marketing, and operational issues. This course will focus on problems unique to information-intensive businesses that you will soon encounter as a consultant, analyst, technologist, or entrepreneur.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. T. Li.

    • This course and the accompanying reading materials aim to provide you with the knowledge and skills required for building information systems that drive business success. You will learn about the process of building modern information systems and about the requirements engineering, analysis, and design activities of software engineering. You will learn to identify stakeholders and requirements, to define the structure of an information system, to evaluate competing solutions for a business problem, and you will start to “speak business and IT”. You will gain an insight into how important these activities are in creating information systems that are truly aligned with business needs. Throughout the course, you will also learn about selected topics in IT strategy and IT software project management. In your team project, you will develop the idea, the business justification, and the requirements for a novel business application.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by Prof.dr. W. Ketter, dr. Y. Ghiassi-Farrokhfal and M.T. Kahlen.

    • The course will focus on managing activities of information resources within the firm that are crucial for the success of the firm. Although understanding information technologies and the role of transformation of businesses is important it is only one part of the picture. The success of the firm depends also on how decisions are allocated and executed. We will start with the analysis of the operating model and the business architecture of the firm. The allocation of decision rights and its accountability – the firm’s governance – will also contribute to successful implementation and use of business applications for the firm. The Chief Information Officer (CIO) is playing an important role with regard to decisions of where, when, and how to employ business applications. The leadership skills and styles of CIOs are analysed and the role of business information manager as internal or external business consultant are reviewed.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by Prof. dr. ir. H.W.G.M. van Heck and T.W. Frick.

    • The exponential growth in data generation and storage creates new business opportunities but also leads to major technical and managerial challenges. New tools, methods, and organisational changes are necessary to take advantage of the growing amount of data, popularly known as Big Data. This course will introduce students to what characterises "Big Data" (e.g., volume, variety and velocity) and to their main challenges. The course will cover the fundamentals of Data Science, including data preparation, modelling, evaluation, and deployment. Specifically, students will learn how to identify data problems and opportunities, and how to structure, design and deploy data-driven solutions that provide value to the business. Students will have hands-on experience solving practical cases using Big Data tools and technologies available in the market.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. R Crisostomo Pereira Belo and dr.ir. O.R. Koppius.

    • This course will consist of lectures on the basics of writing a good thesis and introduce you to a range of research topics, which the professors of Business Information Management (BIM) are currently working on and/or are generally interested in.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. M. Boons.

    • The aim of this course is to provide students with a better understanding of how firms and consumers interact to create greater consumer value and how this process can best be organized. Different stages in the value creation process in which consumer-firm interactions take place are defined and analyzed (i.e. customer journey). Emerging marketing channels and IT-enabled systems that can be used for these different interactions receive special attention. Furthermore, the course is for students eager to learn how to analyze consumer channel usage decisions in each of the interaction stages. The course focuses on consumers’ or users’ information search, purchase decisions, product use, and product reviews.

      Two key questions guide these analyses:

      1. How can individual consumers best be supported in the value chain?
      2. How can consumers be activated so that they themselves become value co-creators?

      Finally, the course provides an overview of current examples of firms’ usage of information technology and marketing tactics across their digital commerce strategies.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. D. Tsekouras MSc.

    • With over 3.3 billion individuals having access to the Internet, organizations have been looking for ways in which they can tap into the skills and knowledge of this online crowd. Through crowdsourcing, organizations no longer need to employ every individual who works for them. Online platforms such as Uber, Helpling, Airbnb essentially offer the same services as traditional firms, but do so by leveraging an online workforce. How do such crowd-based business models affect the functioning of such organizations? How does it affect the people who work for such organizations? And what about the meaning of work and employment in society? In this course we will explore the business and societal implications of the move towards crowd-based business models.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. M. Boons.

    • Is there a best workplace? Can we create workplace environments in which people are innovative, productive, flexible, and satisfied at the same time? Researchers and practitioners have been searching for the ideal workplace for decades now. Many authors have envisioned a future of work or a new world of work. See also the website of Erasmus@Work.

      In this elective we explore topics such as the history of work, current “new work” practices, as well as the possible future of work, and the impact on people, profit and planet. Also, the pros and cons of different kinds of technology supported ways of working will be discussed, and the consequences of media choices for the quality of (virtual) collaboration. The elective focuses especially on the consequences of new technology for individual and team collaboration.

      We do this by literature research, practical cases, assignments, a visit to a company which has implemented a state of the art “new workplace” (Microsoft), and two assignments related to the future of work.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. M.C. Schippers.

    • The course introduces the underlying concepts of computer programming with an emphasis on the building blocks of computer programs, and the associated concepts and principles. These fundamental building blocks include classes, objects and related object-oriented programming elements. These concepts are first taught in pseudo-codes, which can be applied to any programming language. Thereafter, we implement the pseudo-codes in Java programming language. It is assumed that students have no previous knowledge of programming prior to starting this course.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. Y Ghiassi-Farrokhfal.

    • Social Networks shape many aspects of how people and organizations interact, take decisions, and ultimately perform. With the advent of Social Media (e.g., Facebook and Twitter) and with the increasing digitization of all forms of communication and business processes, Social Network Analysis has become a valued asset to better understand how different agents interact and how to best take advantage of the network structure to increase overall system performance. This course will cover the fundamentals of network science, the methods, theories, and the procedures for data collection and analysis in very large social networks. Covered topics include information diffusion, organizational design, viral marketing, social media and others.   This course provides the basics of social network analytics, including fundamental network- and node-level metrics, as well as more advanced analysis methods, with attention to the application areas where these can and have been used. Students will engage in in-class projects in which they collect and analyze network data using the tools and methods covered in class. Students will apply these methods to specific networks, such as social media networks (e.g., Twitter), co-worker networks, organization networks, and product networks.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. R Crisostomo Pereira Belo.

    • “Marketing Analytics” refers to a broad range of activities, all of which rely on data to improve managerial decisions. Given the explosion over the past two decades in the amount and types of data available to even the smallest companies, it is no surprise that spending on marketing analytics continues to rise. Marketing analytics encompasses a diverse set of activities, requiring analysts to possess a diverse set of skills. Although a background in programming and statistics is important, these technical skills by themselves are not sufficient for success. First, analysts must understand the business context so that they can sensibly interpret their results. Second, marketing analysts must be able to clearly and persuasively communicate their insights to managers. This course will provide many hands-on opportunities to develop and integrate these diverse skills. In the first half of the course, emphasis will be placed on reinforcing technical skills that were developed in earlier courses, as well as developing new ones. In the second half of the course, the emphasis will be on the application of these skills to solve managerial problems and communicate a recommended course of action.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. J.M.T. Roos.

    • Google, Apple, and Amazon as well as countless other firms in the digital landscape are operating what is referred to as the platform-based business model. Platforms differ from traditional markets in that platform owners, the firms coordinating and governing these markets, have to get two or more distinct groups of users on board, and the value of the platform to one group of users (e.g. producers of video games) is contingent on the presence of other groups (e.g. consumers of games). Platform owners that successfully solve this “chicken-and-egg” problem typically enjoy steep adoption rates and, as a result, tend to outperform their rivals. This elective unveils why it is that certain platforms win the standards war where others fail. The course also covers competitive dynamics for the providers of complementary goods, the firms and individuals operating within the confines of platforms. The applications of the course can be found in real-world platforms and phenomena including: video game consoles, peer-to-peer sharing platforms such as Kickstarter and TopCoder, ‘killer apps’ and the long-tail, as well as some canonical examples from recent history including video cassette players and the QWERTY keyboard. The following lectures will be taught: (1) Fighting the standard wars, (2) How network effects work, (3) Beyond pricing: platform rules, (4) Killer-apps and the long tail, (5) Competition within platform markets, and (6) Platforms for the people.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. G.J. Rietveld.

    • With the explosion of Big Data from social media and technologies such as RFID, GPS, and sensor-data, organisations are increasingly confronted with the need and opportunity to develop Business Analytics capabilities to take advantage of Big Data. This gives many great opportunities to work on the cutting edge of science and business.   In order to design a practical Business Analytics application, we will explain throughout the course how to use the programming language and software environment R to collect, analyse, and visualise relevant data, be they publicly available data (social media or otherwise) or internal data from a company.

      Review the course guide for more detail.

      Taught by dr. J. van Dalen and dr. Z. Cao.

    • Advances in IT have transformed the market microstructure of many industries. Financial services, commercial services, entertainment, media and news industry, the hi-tech & telecommunications sectors, manufacturing, retailing, energy and transportation will all experience significant structural change. We investigate how these developments influence the business practices, profitability of corporations and digital policy. In each case of industry, we will analyze the linkages between market structure, resulting digital policy options that are open to firms and government and how information technology can be deployed in support of these strategies and policy regimes.
       
      The course will emphasize the use of economic frameworks to raise and answer questions and to analyze options open to businesses. Discussions and analyses will be about formulating frameworks that bring out the limitations of the traditional responses of businesses when faced with changes and uncertainties about the market.  Students will acquire hands-on-experience with analytical methods in analyzing business and industry structure, optimal policy and strategy.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. J.H. Oh.

    • In this course, you will learn how to design technologies that bring people joy, rather than frustration. You'll learn how to conduct fieldwork with people to help you get design ideas or to evaluate the developed solutions. You'll learn principles of perception and cognition that inform effective interaction design. You'll learn several techniques for rapidly prototyping and evaluating multiple interface alternatives -- and why rapid prototyping and comparative evaluation are essential to excellent interaction design. How to make paper prototypes and low-fidelity mock-ups that are interactive -- and how to use these designs to get feedback from other stakeholders like your teammates, clients, and users. You'll learn principles of visual design so that you can effectively organize and present information with your interfaces. And you'll learn how to perform and analyse controlled experiments online. In many cases, we'll use Web design as the anchoring domain. A lot of the examples will come from the Web, and we'll talk just a bit about Web technologies in particular. When we do so, it will be to support the main goal of this course, which is helping you build human-centered design skills, so that you have the principles and methods to create excellent interfaces with any technology.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. K. Koroleva.

    • Businesses today have to cope with an increasing rate of change and adaptation. One of the key Business Information Management disciplines to support this cycle is the discipline of "architecting" an enterprise by means of Enterprise Architectures (EA). EA is as a set of practices consisting of high-level views and norms that guide the coherent and consistent design and implementation of organisational structures, processes, information provisioning and technology within an organization. If carried out properly, EA leverages Information Technology to help innovate the enterprise. This course is highly relevant to those of you who are looking to increase their skills in advising organisations to effectively move from strategy to execution.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr.ir. R.M. van Wessel.

    • Working with other MSc SE students as a team you will develop your own business; practical experience of the process means you gain a thorough understanding of the role played by planning in the successful creation of new ventures, and you’ll have personal experience of the analytical processes  that take place. Real action This MScSE course is no role-playing exercise. It’s real and action-oriented – you go out and make the venture happen. Along the way you learn how to refine opportunities, create a business model, perform feasibility analysis, plan your marketing and your finances, and organise the whole entrepreneurial venture. Pitching to the jury You will write a business plan and pitch it to a jury of experts; a hugely valuable learning experience. Students from previous years have actually launched successful businesses as a result of the MScSE Entrepreneurial Lab. They include Senz umbrellas and online gift company Yoursurprise.com.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by Dr. L. Berchicci.

    • This course gives master students a practical and rigorous understanding of the role, the analytics, and the process of business planning that leads to the successful creation of new business for established firms. Students learn feasibility analysis, business modelling, market research, financial planning, and organisational implementation. In the past, actionable new business plans have been developed by students for – and in close collaboration with – a variety of multinationals and SME firms including Philips, Heijmans, TNO, Airborne, StudentEvents, Ubiqu, Synthesis and Surefas. Students choose from a wide range of new business opportunities from sponsor firms, and teams with a common preference are formed. Each team researches and develops a business plan for a new opportunity for their firm. Grading is based on interim reports, the final business plan, individual progress presentations, and team peer feedback.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. F.P.H. Jaspers and dr. S. Tasselli.

    • Software-based platforms and their ecosystems are increasingly a cornerstone of the strategies of firms to gain a (sustainable) competitive advantage. Well known examples of these software-based platforms such as the App Store platform of Apple, the Android Apps platform, or the BlackBerry Apps World are receiving a lot of attention both from the academic and business communities. A software-based platform is defined by Amrit Tiwana (2014) as ‘the extensible code base of a software-based system that provides core functionality shared by the modules that interoperate with it and the interfaces through which they operate’ and the platform ecosystem is ‘the collection of the platform and its modules (apps) specific to it’. A module is an add-on software subsystem that connects to the platform to add functionality to it. In short, software-based platforms consist of services that are made available to developers through Application Processing Interfaces (API’s). In this course we will explore the architectural and governance issues of these platform ecosystems and other factors that could explain how platform ecosystems can contribute to a firm’s competitive advantage and why some platform ecosystems are flourishing and others fail.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. J.H. Oh.

    • The web is evolving faster every day, and the effects on business and information technology can be disruptive. This is an exciting course about the technology driven developments in the world of next generation business applications. You will learn about the foundations of the latest technologies for designing and developing systems like Intelligent Agents, Service Oriented Architecture, Mash-ups and Cloud Computing and how you could use building blocks from Google and many others. Theoretical and practical aspects of all phases of the software life cycle are discussed, especially about software requirements specifications techniques, analysis, design, and implementation and testing. This knowledge will be reinforced by individual assignments and a team project in start-up style. The team project is based on a leading edge real-life case. The case selection is made by the student team and is accepted as long as it complies with the objectives of the course. This is a great opportunity for a real-life laboratory for a start-up idea. The implementation is based on ‘assembling and extending existing components’ instead of ‘writing the entire software from scratch’, this makes the course open for a wide audience including participants with very little or no programming experience.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by Prof. dr. W. Ketter.

    • In the course we explore how social media impacts and is impacted by people and organizations in which it is embedded and which opportunities and challenges it creates. Social media alters the flow of information and allows to reconsider formal organizational structures, decision making and power relationships. For example, consumers become producers of information, products and services (e.g. crowdsourcing) and companies might benefit from opening up their platforms to third-party developers (e.g. Facebook, Google, etc.).
       
      In response, organizations need to adjust their strategies and business models, to meet new customer demands and the increasing competition on the market. In order to integrate social media into an existing business, for example, organizations need to define new ways of communication with their customers as well as the ways to measure the return on investment. Alternatively, in order to expand into an online business, organizations need to define their unique value proposition as well as develop a novel business model. Additionally, companies need to address the facing competition from the social sharing systems which can fundamentally alter the existing market structures.
       
      We will address these issues in a set of interactive lectures. There will be weekly case studies and/or assignments as well as in-class student presentations.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by Dr K. Koroleva.

    • Why do so many ambitious projects fail despite decades of experience with project management methods? What contribution can you make when you are an ‘independent outsider’, such as an auditor, who is asked to assess a project and who is expected to give advice that really makes a difference? Why do rational people make irrational decisions when they fail to redirect projects when needed and why would they listen to an outsider? Why do more ‘controls’ not always bring more control? These are the main questions we aim to answer in this course.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by A.P. Simons.

    • During the past decade, the spread of smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices has provided us with access to the Internet at any time and from (almost) any place. Over the next decade, the emerging Internet of Things is projected to link billions of physical devices to the virtual world. While the first development was responsible for the increasing relevance of location-based services in our daily lives, the latter one will ensure that we are just at the beginning of an era, in which spatial data enters into personal and business decision-making at an unprecedented rate. After all, in addition to data related to, for instance, communication, weather, or health, most of these devices also collect and transmit data regarding their location at any given time.

      Review the course guide for more information.

      Taught by dr. T. Brandt.

    • In the “Big Data” age, data scientists are being utilized increasingly by managers to monetize the rich data assets owned by their companies. Data science activities can add value to a company in a variety of ways, such as forming the basis for new, innovative products; by accurately predicting customer churn; or by analyzing consumer sentiment from social media. Besides a big shortage of data scientists, there is an even bigger shortage of managers who understand core data science activities. This course will give you hands-on experience with such activities, as well as an overview of trends in the market. In this course you will learn the key concepts and methods that form the core of a modern data scientist's toolbox. You will gain hands-on experience with applying machine learning tools and algorithms using the R software environment, for example to predict sales. The course will be directly useful to students aspiring to use these machine learning tools in business practice themselves, but also to those who want to understand machine learning activities so that they can identify areas where data science can add value to a company. The textbook listed below, which can be downloaded for free, will give you an idea of the level of R skills you will attain and the types of analyses we will consider in the course. The group assignments will take the form of data analysis competitions, where students compete to build the best model for a specific business problem (such as predicting new product adoption in a direct marketing campaign). These problem-driven data cases are examples of typical data science projects encountered in industry.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. P. Schoonees.

    • Forecasting the demand for products, the likelihood of success, risks and the dynamics of capacity are important every-day decisions for companies throughout the supply chain. They affect the management of inventories, procurement and production decisions, logistics resources and financial planning. Forecasting not only influences the performance of individual companies; it also affects the performance of the supply chain as a whole. This elective explores how forecasting performance is affected by the choice of models, the characteristics of the demand process, the interaction between forecasters and information technology, the incentives of the planners and the behaviour of channel partners.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. J. van Dalen.

    • BIM students have the opportunity to combine the writing of their thesis with an internship with a company (minimum of 168 hours) during the elective block 3, 4 or 5 and replacing an elective course with this internship. The internship must be related to the thesis and students need to decide on doing an internship in consultation with their thesis coach. The business research project will be assessed separately from the thesis (on a pass/fail basis) by the thesis coach and a company supervisor.

      Review the course guide for more details.

      Taught by dr. M. Boons.

  • The MSc BIM program offers its most talented and motivated students a challenging extracurricular course – Honours Programme. Participation is by invitation only. For more information please click here.

    • The master thesis is your opportunity to show your potential as a next generation manager. During this period, you will interact with internationally-recognized companies and well-known researchers in the field of Business Information Management.

      The writing of your master thesis – the report of your scientific study – is the most important part of the Business Information Management programme. During the year you will participate in a structured master thesis trajectory. You will start in September, during the core courses, to familiarize yourself with the research being done at our department and the relevant academic literature and topics available. Staff involved in this MSc will present their current research projects, and you will be invited to link your master thesis to one of these projects. Before Christmas you will decide on a final topic and be assigned a coach who is an expert in the subject area chosen. Early January a research methodology course will bring you up to date with best practice in research and provide you with the foundation that you will need to complete your thesis successfully. Before spring you will deliver your final research proposal after which you will implement your research question and finalize your thesis before the summer. Staff and researchers will provide assistance by coaching you through the entire master thesis process.

      The following themes are examples of possible BIM Master Thesis topics:

      • The Impact of IT on Business
      • Online Human Behavior
      • Big Data and Analytics
      • Social Media and Digital Commerce
      • Green IT and Energy Business

Note regarding taking courses if you are not an RSM master student: RSM does not offer the possibility for non-RSM students (master or otherwise) to take RSM courses outside of official exchange partnerships or other inter-faculty agreements.