Register for a Fall 2020 Social Impact Course

Learn more about the intersection of social impact and business with Wharton courses next semester.

student in a black top and acrylic glasses smiling in a wharton classroom

Students—we are wishing you the best as you navigate the rest of this semester online. Though we understand everyone is focused on the immediate future, you may also be starting to think about your Fall courses.

If you’re interested in social impact, Wharton offers numerous courses that will help you understand and tackle many of the most pressing social and environmental challenges in the world.

We’ve updated our Social Impact Courses page so that Penn and Wharton students can explore and find a course that matches their interests for the Fall 2020 semester.

Below in alphabetical order by department, we’ve highlighted just a few of the many undergraduate and graduate courses available.


BEPP 202/FNCE 202: CONSUMER FINANCIAL DECISION MAKING

Professors Olivia Mitchell and Nikolai Roussanov

Meets Tuesday/Thursday 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. (undergraduates)

This course examines economic models of household decisions and evidence on how consumers are managing (and mismanaging) their finances. If you are seeking to take charge of your own financial future, interested in policy debates over consumer financial decision making, or thinking about becoming a FinTech entrepreneur, this course is for you.


BEPP 230/FNCE 230/REAL 230 AND BEPP 773/FNCE 730/REAL 730: URBAN FISCAL POLICY

Professor Fernando Ferreira

Meets Monday/Wednesday 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. (undergraduates) and 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (MBAs)

This course will examine the ideal provision of public services by cities and school districts. Why cities exist, whether urban public finance matters, and realities of local governments such as poverty, crime, and corruption will be covered. We will also study new topics such as partnerships with the private sector, enterprise zones, the role of technology, and real estate policies that promote sustainable city development. Moreover, we will also cover the recent effects of the coronavirus pandemic on cities.


FNCE 750: VENTURE CAPITAL AND THE FINANCE OF INNOVATION

Professor Luke Taylor

Meets Monday/Wednesday 12:00p.m. – 1:30p.m., 1:30p.m. – 3:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (MBAs)

If you’re a finance major interested in a career in venture capital (VC) or in R&D-intensive companies in health care or information technology, this course is for you. This course covers the finance of technological innovation, with a focus on the valuation tools useful in the VC industry. We won’t discuss impact investing specifically, but impact investing shares several features in common with VC.


LGST 215 AND LGST 815: ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT, LAW & POLICY

Professor Sarah Light

Meets Tuesday/Thursday 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (MBAs and undergraduates)

How do law, policy, and business intersect? In this course, we will examine a series of case studies. Examples include how the law of municipal and hazardous waste management informs business practices about e-waste; how informational regulation affects business strategy; and how the dominance of state rather than federal rules governing hydraulic fracturing affects both business decisions and the economic and environmental implications of that practice. We will also examine the emerging concepts of private environmental governance, and then focus on different approaches of incorporating sustainability into business practices, including through lifecycle analysis and environmental management systems.


MGMT 224 AND MGMT 624: LEADING DIVERSITY IN ORGANIZATIONS

Professor Stephanie Creary

Meets Monday/Wednesday 10:30 a.m. – 12:00p.m. and 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. (undergraduates, half credit) and Monday/Wednesday 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (MBAs, half credit)

Take this course if you’re interested in understanding how to make organizations more diverse and inclusive as a manager/leader and how to more effectively navigate diverse organizations as an employee.


MKTG 733: MARKETING FOR SOCIAL IMPACT

Professor Deborah Small

Meets Monday/Wednesday 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. (MBAs)

Are you interested in social impact and marketing? This course consists of three distinct but connected modules: The first module focuses on social marketing strategies for changing the behavior of a target segment of consumers on key issues in the public interest. The second module explores these initiatives within the context of specific issues (e.g., environmental sustainability, health behaviors, financial decisions, etc.). The third module of the course examines the growing role of corporate social initiatives as they relate to marketing.


OIDD 490: THE SCIENCE OF BEHAVIOR CHANGE

Professors Angela Duckworth and Katherine Milkman

Meets Wednesdays 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (undergraduates)

Take this course if you’re interested in learning about changing behavior for the better (e.g., promoting healthier eating and exercise, encouraging better study habits, and increasing savings rates). You’ll learn about cutting-edge research from psychology and economics. Furthermore, ever wonder how some of the largest organizations, like Google, apply those research findings? Take this course to find out! Please complete the application by July 15th if you are interested in registering for this seminar. Permission of the instructor is required.


Check out our full running list of social impact courses. We list courses that are available in Fall 2020 as well as courses that may be offered other semesters.
For more information about available courses, professors, evaluation data, or registration, visit MyWharton. Undergrads, don’t forget about the Social Impact & Responsibility concentration, housed in the Legal Studies and Business Ethics department.