Patents, Puppies, and Professionalism: Welcome to Economics of Innovation!

Hi, my name is Ali and I’m a senior Economics major and REMS minor … and I’m super thrilled to blog about our UBER COOL seventh block class, The Economics of Innovation, taught by Professor Dan Johnson! For the first half of the class, we’ve been digging in deep on the literature, theory, and policy implications of innovation — exploring topics such as funding, environmental impact, and intellectual property rights. We’ve studied just over 60 articles (woo hoo!) on innovation and I’m super pleased to report that I am a proud patent dork. Who would have thought that learning about IP law, and specifically about patents would be so enthralling? But after our first night of reading about patents, I was smitten.

You got your utility patents, your design patents, your plant patents … and then you have a whole web of intricacies surrounding software patents! A really awesome patent fun fact, courtesy of Professor Johnson, is that there is a patented watch for dogs, which displays time in dog years by multiplying every human minute times seven!

Not to get distracted by puppies telling time, we have been engaging in really valuable class discussions this past week and a half — challenging each other’s and our own perspectives on regulatory oversight, privacy, and the ethics of new technology. This has all been in preparation for our field trip to Boston next week (April 8-12). There, we will meet with innovative leaders in healthcare, defense, technology, education, finance, and culinary arts (specifically, the art of cookie-baking!). I’m VERY excited for that last one!

Not only will our field trip allow us to ask questions of industry leaders and hear first-hand what it’s like to work in the innovation realm, but it will also allow us the opportunity to network with professionals in fields in which we may want to work. I’m most excited about meeting with esteemed CC alums, some of whom have actually taken this same class before! I’ve also never been to Boston before, so I’m super excited to try my first clam chowder alongside some of the kindest and smartest classmates!

Stay tuned for our innovative adventures! Coming Up Next: Learn About Our Block-Long Innovation Projects!

Published by Ali

Hi, My name is Ali Baird and I am a senior economics major and REMS minor. I am a big fan of puppies, frosting cupcakes, and collecting stationary. I'm super pumped to be blogging for the BEST class ever, The Economics of Innovation, taught by Professor Dan Johnson!

4 replies on “Patents, Puppies, and Professionalism: Welcome to Economics of Innovation!”

  1. Thanks so much for sharing, Ali! Can’t wait to read more about what your class is up to this block.

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