Economics and Management of Platforms

Business and Economics

About this course

Digital platforms (e.g., Uber, iOS, AirBnB) are transforming entire industries. The drivers of platform markets’ success are complex, and the successful setup and management of a platform requires a sound theoretical understanding of the concepts of network effects, two-sided markets, and complementarity.

The seminar seeks to provide an advanced understanding of the following questions:

  • What are digital platforms and how do they impact markets?
  • Which economic principles underlie platforms?
  • What strategies enable firms to successfully establish platforms?

Learning outcomes

Knowledge Objectives After the course, students will be able to:

  • Understand the concept of digital platforms from a managerial and economic perspective
  • Understand the economic impact of platforms
  • Outline the economic principles underlying platforms
  • Craft and evaluate strategies for the effective management of digital platforms

Skills Objectives

  • Improve diagnostic and analytical skills (i.e., structured problem-solving)
  • Build up critical thinking and interpretation skills
  • Enhance verbal and argumentation skills via presentations and group discussions


  • Shapiro, Carl, and Hal R. Varian. Information rules: a strategic guide to the network economy. Harvard Business Press, 1998.
  • Parker, Geoffrey G., Marshall W. Van Alstyne, and Sangeet Paul Choudary. Platform revolution: how networked markets are transforming the economyand how to make them work for you. WW Norton & Company, 2016.

Course requirements

very strongly recommend you previously attend an introductory course on economics (e.g., “Principles of Economics”) and management (e.g., “International Management”). Also, the attendance of a course on empirical research methods (e.g., "Empirical Research Methods in Management and Economics") is recommended.


The introductory session will provide an introduction into the key concepts and academic writing in a lecture-style. The largest share of this course will be based on interactive discussions among course participants and based on the presentations of the course participants. A large share of learning will occur through you preparing for the in-class session.

Link to more information

  • Credits
    ECTS 6
  • Contact hours per week
  • Instructors
    Jens Förderer, Michaela Lindenmayr
  • Mode of instruction
  • Course coordinator
If anything remains unclear, please check the FAQ of TUM (Germany).


  • Start date

    • Ends
    • Term *
    • Instruction language
These offerings are valid for students of L'X (France)