Economics and business in the Web (graduate course)

Monday, 1 February, 2010 (All day)
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Veria)
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Mathematics Department, Master in Web science


Web emerged as an antidote to the rapidly increasing quantity of accumulated knowledge and become successful because it facilitates massive participation and communication with minimum costs. Today, its enormous impact, scale and dynamism in time and space make very difficult (and sometimes impossible) to measure and anticipate the effects in human society. In addition to that, we demand from the Web to be fast, secure, reliable, all-inclusive and trustworthy in any transaction.

The scope of this course is to analyze the Web economy and to identify its major participants and their functions in order to understand how it differs from the traditional setting and what implications have these differences. 



1.         Introduction

1.1       The Web in short     

1.2.      Web and economic research          

1.3.      The Web Science perspective         

1.4.      Studying goods, users, models and policies in the Web ecosystem        

2.         Goods in the Web   

2.1.      Data, information, knowledge         

2.2.      Information goods   

2.3.      Knowledge goods     

2.4.      Digital goods 

2.5.      Networks and network goods         

2.6.1.      Network externalities and effects             

2.6.2.      The origins of network externalities      

2.6.3.      Types of network effects              

2.6.4.      Important issues related to network goods       

2.6.5.      Network externalities in the Web             

2.7.      Web Goods    

2.7.1.      What is a Web Good and why is important          

2.7.2.      The basic categories of Web Goods         

2.7.3.      Differences between Web Goods and digital goods           

2.7.4.      Web Goods as commodities       

2.8.      Search and experience goods and the Web         

3.         Users

3.1.      A classification of Web Users          

3.2.      The core functions of the Web Economy  

4.         Consumption and Production in the Web        

4.1.      Introduction 

4.2.      Consumption

4.2.1.      More energetic and connected consumption      

4.2.2.      Consumer coordination at large in the Web:  the Amazon co-purchase network          

4.2.3.      Personal data abuse and regulation challenges  

4.3.      Joint consumption of information and advertisements in massive scale          

4.4.      Moving the borders between production and consumption      

5.         Production  

5.1.      Inputs: information and knowledge reloaded      

5.2       Incentives: from property to commons     

5.3.      Peer Production: decentralized inter-creativity outside the classic market      

5.4.      From mass to networked media     

6.         Economic modeling of Web Goods        

6.1.      Advertising in the Web       

6.2.      The Stegeman model           

6.3.      The KKPS model                  

6.4.      The Katona-Sarvary model             

6.5.      The Dellarocas-Katona-Rand model                      

7.         Market regulation and antitrust issues 

7.1.      Antitrust issues in the Search Engine market: the Pollock model          

7.2.      Net Neutrality           

7.3.      The Web in a crossroad      

8.         Web-based development: brief overview and major challenges     

8.1.      ICTs’ role in relation to social inequality   

8.2.      Development drivers in the networked information economy  

8.3.      A minimal framework for Web-based development policies      

8.4.      Web-based policies in action