I teach an introductory graduate seminar on the regional economic development. The class is premised on understanding how the history of a location conditions its assets and future. We begin by introducing the basic concepts of political economy, path dependence, and transaction cost economics. These become the foundation for understanding the emergence of industrial agglomeration/clusters and the role of value chains in regional development.
At the undergraduate level, I teach two courses:
The first course is an upper-division Technology and Society course. The class is premised upon my belief that technology and its application are fundamental in structuring human existence. I am to demonstrate that our current socio-technical world exists due to human choices. This course has two goals. First, it is meant to provide a deep understanding of how technologies evolve and how though we construct these technologies, they also structure our lives. In this way, decisions on technological directions become powerful factors, or, in Latour’s terms, “actants” in our lives. To do this we define what technology is and why it is so central in social life, both at the individual and societal levels. Second, we explore how technology evolves in particular social fields ranging from sports to music and the military. This is meant to provide more approachable cases studies illustrating the class concepts. Students are expected to write a major research paper on the evolution of a particular artifact of their choice.
The second course deals with the dynamics of regional change. We cover the basic concepts of economic geography and then discuss the political economy of space. We pay particular attention to the transformation of space and social relations by capitalist economic activity. We discuss the geography of entrepreneurship and consider the effects of digital platforms on the political economy through in-depth studies of Google and Amazon.