Module code: MANM451

Module Overview

This course provides a framework (and multiple lenses) through which to think about the digital economy, with a special focus on digital and social media platforms and international development. Using an entrepreneurial approach to problem solving, the module provides research-led insights into latest developments, current issues, problems and up-to-date trends in the digital economy.

The module offers a critical and creative perspective on the digital economy as well as a hand-on experience into the use of digital technologies. It combines theory, entrepreneurial tools and case study examples from a variety of contexts and insight from practice. It offers the students the opportunity to work on a real-world project and to develop an appreciation of the value of the digital economy as well as its ethical, privacy and risks implications.

During the course, students will divide into small teams to develop a digital platform solution to tackle a chosen problem in a specific context. Students will draw inspiration, lessons and critical notes from the wide range of examples and frameworks discussed through the course. The course also equips students with basic skills to develop their own digital presence, including crafting their own project landing page, and conducting digital research to support their proposed solutions.

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader


Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 12

Independent Learning Hours: 92

Lecture Hours: 18

Guided Learning: 10

Captured Content: 18

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Understanding digital economy for sustainable development

  • Problem definition and designing solutions to world problems with digital technologies

  • Value creation and value capture in the digital economy

  • Big and open data in the digital economy

  • Digital engagement strategies and stakeholder engagement online

  • Responsible digitalization and data ethics 

  • Current trends and future directions of digital economy for sustainable development

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Project (Group/Individual/Dissertation) Digital platform solution to tackle a real-world problem 40
Coursework Individual Essay 60

Alternative Assessment

Individual word report

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate advanced understanding of the subject matter and mastery of the learning outcomes through practical application. The latter is assessed as an integrative collaborative project that showcases students’ subject-specific knowledge and cognitive skills as well as their practical ability to apply their learning to complex problems and tasks in the relevant domain of professional practice. The former is assessed through an individual essay applying the concepts of the course to reflect on the application of the chosen digital economy intervention (. The two elements of assessment are thus designed to complement each other.

The summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Group project that develops a digital economy solution to tackle a real world problem: 40% (learning outcomes 3, 4 and 5)

  • Individual essay to reflect on the application of the solution: 60% (learning outcomes 1, 2 and 3)

Formative assessment
Formative feedback is offered on an ongoing basis during seminars/group discussions, active learning sessions and project tutorials, which may be done face-to-face or online (synchronously).

Formative feedback is provided as detailed above.
Summative feedback is provided in writing, separately for each of the elements of assessment.

Module aims

  • Analyse the generic contribution of digital technologies to sustainable development
  • Apply critical conceptual frameworks to understand digital economy evidence and practice in various contexts
  • Identify and apply their own potential as digital innovators and demonstrate an appreciation of the trade-offs involved in embracing that solution

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
003 Think critically and creatively about the challenge of applying digital economy solutions to world problems and its alternative course of actions KCP
002 Appreciate the mechanisms, roles and effects of digital technologies for development KC
001 Demonstrate knowledge on the technological, social and economic principles of digital technologies to solve real world problems KCP
004 Apply technical skills to use basic technologies to develop a digital presence PT
005 Apply entrepreneurial design principles to organise and communicate a project CPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed on the principles of project-based experiential pedagogy and thus combines research-informed academic content with applied learning through project work.

Learning and teaching is research-led and follows a student-focused, experiential, flipped-classroom methodology with online elements. It comprises lectures, group discussions, masterclass sessions, and practical platform design workshops. It includes active and self-directed learning-both group and individual. Prior to attending the lecture and seminar, students are expected to undertake the essential reading and complete any set work for the sessions.

The project work, which is the basis of both active learning and module assessment, is designed to give students the experience of working in an international and cross-cultural context. It is supported by engagement with practice through real-world cases and may include talks from guest practitioners, webinars and company visits. Together with dedicated group project tutorials- these sessions are designed to support student learning project work providing formative feedback in preparation for the assessment.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures are mainly designed to illustrate and explain theoretical concepts and models.

  • Seminars/group discussions are designed to develop a more practical insight into the applied nature of the various topics covered: they help explore the theoretical concepts and models by reference to a range of topical issues and case studies.

  • Active learning includes engaging in classroom practical exercises, video and case analyses, and group project work.

  • Active learning through online study (synchronous and asynchronous), complemented by peer learning;

  • Self-directed and pertains to engaging with learning materials and undertaking desk research required for classroom participation and assessment.

  • Masterclass/guest speakers sessions are there to support the student-led projects, and will deal with current issues of direct relevance to student projects and are informed by the latest research and business practice.

  • Project tutorials support students in their project work through systematic review of progress, discussion and formative feedback from an academic tutor. These may run face-to face or online (synchronously).

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: MANM451

Other information

This course emphasizes the following core Surrey Curriculum Framework (SCF) pillars:

Global and cultural capabilities: in line with the spirit of the programme, we prepare our students to work in a multicultural global working environment. Both staff and students on this module come from diverse and culturally rich backgrounds. The module introduces diverse perspectives through expert faculty covering topic from a diverse range of countries, cultures and environments, covering. Students in this module will develop competencies to engage effectively with people from different backgrounds in ways that respect the interests of cultural groups and individual rights.

Digital capabilities: this module offers a deep dive into understanding and applying digital technologies for their own group work. As such, students will gain useful and up-to-date skills to enable them to participate actively in society and professional life, within a digital, connected world. This includes developing their own digital presence through a project landing page, and a broad range of related capabilities, such as tools to conduct digital research.  

Employability: Students in this module will be supported to develop a unique set of individual, interpersonal and professional skills, relevant to their discipline and career ambitions. The course will cover expert topics that are industry-focused cases and exposed them to tools that are relevant for their future work.

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2023/4 academic year.