Emerging Business Models

Module description

The module introduces you to the concept and process of business model innovation and exposes you to the principles of emerging business models that are disrupting industries worldwide, e.g. the sharing economy, the circular economy and the performance economy. A focus is placed on 'value' both non-monetised and monetised and how business can create, and deliver it. The cohort will get the opportunity to validate their business model ideas with real world assignments.

Internationalisation:  the module will draw on recent scholarship in the areas of strategy and innovation and showcase case studies based on a variety of national contexts.

Sustainability: the module will investigate how emerging business models tend to produce more sustainable outcomes

External Engagement: external speakers will be sourced from previous iterations, in particular from a variety of organisations that have innovated through their business model, e.g. M&S and Accenture ADP

Employability: the module will offer an opportunity to acquire knowledge and develop analytical and lateral thinking skills for those pursuing careers in business strategy, planning, innovation management, research & development.

Research in Teaching and Enquiring: The module builds on recent literature surrounding changing economic models such as circular economy, sharing economy and business model innovation.


Full module specification

Module title:Emerging Business Models
Module code:MBAM910A
Module level:M
Academic year:2016/7
Module lecturers:
  • Mr Adam Lusby -
Module credit:12
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 1:

4 days + 6 weeks of study

Module aims

This module has two main aims, (1) to introduce you to the concept and process of business model innovation and (2) to help you identify emerging models that provide organisations with opportunities to reconsider their business model while improving their appeal and effectiveness.

Module aims: by the end of the module you will be able to:

  • Understand what a business model is, and its components
  • Appreciate the ways in which the business model can be a source of innovation
  • Apply frameworks such as the business model canvas and value proposition canvas to analyse and critique the business model of an organisation
  • Appreciate how emerging business models can be a source of disruption
  • Identify how enabling technologies can be a source of new business models
  • Consider how emerging business models can be guided to create positive impact, directly and systemically
  • Appreciate the characteristics of emerging models such as the sharing economy, the circular economy and the performance economy and their potential to disrupt firms and industries

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. explain the process of business model innovation
  • 2. identify how the cycles of culture, innovation and economics affect business
  • 3. analyse and critically evaluate business models using established frameworks
  • 4. evaluate alternative business models and their potential for disruption
  • 5. evaluate emerging technologies and social trends that are having an impact on organisations
  • 6. identify solutions using emerging models

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 7. critically evaluate alternative scenarios in the context of business discipline
  • 8. utilise social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to engage with stakeholders, and test and validate business proposed business models
  • 9. critically reflect on “business as usual” and emerging solutions

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 10. demonstrate the capacity for analytical and reasoned discussion
  • 11. demonstrate effective independent study skills
  • 12. demonstrate effective written communication skills

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities28Lectures, Interactive workshops
Guided independent study92Reading, personal research exercise, writing

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Presentation10 minutes3, 4, 10, 12Oral feedback

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Group assignment (5/6 group members)705000 wordsAllWritten feedback
Individual Reflexive Journal30Written assignment 2500 words (presented in two 1250 word chapters)AllWritten feedback

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Individual AssignmentIndividual Assignment 3000 words1 - 126 weeks from briefing

Syllabus plan

Day One

  • Introductions – what is a business model?
  • The importance of understanding 'Value'
  • Making money and doing good: social entrepreneurship: the rise of B-corp and social investment

 Day Two

  • Business model innovation and the business model canvas: principles and applications
  • Reinvent your business model
  • The “sharing economy” – principles and potential for disruption: a morning session exploring the various models of the sharing economy and comparing these to businesses taking advantage of collaborative consumption. Includes a discussion around the notion of shared value and co-competition

Day Three

  • Opportunities from the “crowd”: crowdfunding, crowdsourcing, open data
  • The Design of Everything: Designing for value creation, capture and delivery 

Day Four

  • Benefiting from the circular economy: framework and applications: A morning session exploring the business model of the circular economy. Covering the performance economy, the inner loops of repair and remanufacturing. Also the design innovation drivers of Biomimicry and Cradle to Cradle.
  • Presentations: reinventing your business model


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Osterwalder A, Pigneur Y (2010) Business Model Generation, Wiley & Sons

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