IMI Elective Courses

BTC1860H Generations of Advanced Medicine: Biologics in Therapy (GAMBiT)

  • Prof. Leigh Revers and Duncan Jones
  • Winter term
  • Thursdays 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm – UC144 and Faculty Club (St. George Campus)

In this course, we focus exclusively on the dominant role of biologic therapies in modern medicine. In 2020, six of the top 10 drugs by revenue were molecules of biologic origin, namely those manufactured primarily by biosynthetic rather than chemical means, with sales of the top selling therapy, the anti-TNFα monoclonal antibody adalimumab, falling just shy of the US$20 billion mark. The lucrative preeminence of biologics is set to continue, bolstered by the introduction of innovative molecular delivery strategies, such as antibody-targeted conjugates, fragments and fusions, as well as by the robust staying power of market leaders. The latter phenomenon is an inevitable consequence of the higher-than-usual regulatory hurdles faced by conventional generic manufacturers seeking to make biosimilars: intended copies of off-patent biologics that, having undergone a strict comparability exercise, are approved by regulatory agencies such as the EMA and the FDA.

This course will survey this changing landscape within an historical framework and will highlight critical scientific and process parameters unique to biologics, that set them aside from conventional small-molecule medicines, including their molecular architecture and mechanisms of action, manufacturing considerations, analytical and functional lot release assays and clinical trial design. We will explore some of the pitfalls by examining a roster of clinical case studies. The capacity of payers to afford these increasingly high-cost therapies in the face of current economic trends will be discussed.

The broad goals of the course are as follows:

  • A detailed understanding of the complexities associated with biologic drugs;
  • A broad familiarity with biologics manufacturing and its inherent variability;
  • A critical understanding of the aspects of biosimilarity; and
  • A familiarity with the clinical implications emerging from the use of biologics.

BTC1889H Deep Learning in Health  

  • Instructor – TBA
  • Winter term
  • Thursdays 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm. Room TBA

This is an advanced course in machine learning that is focused on the application of neural networks in a health context. The course assumes a strong foundation to create machine learning models in the coding language R. Basic foundations of neural networks are reviewed. Students will learn about the limitations and the appropriate use of neural networks by working on health and biological related data sets.

BTC2040H Change Management – Offering TBD

  • Instructor – Ann Armstrong
  • Winter term
  • Mondays 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm. Delivery Mode TBD

Managing change well has long been considered a key leadership skill. Many organizations are experiencing significant rates of change now! Knowing about change management will provide you with a significant competitive advantage in your careers.

In this course, you will learn about some current models of change management as well as examples of change management done well and not. The course is interactive. Central to the course and your learning is participation in a sophisticated change simulation, used by universities, corporates, and non-profits, to let you experience change. You will create—and implement—a change plan that will help you develop not only your understanding of change models but will provide you with tactics that you can use in any future change management work.

BTC2110H Topics in Biotechnology: Structural Biology in Drug Development & Biotechnology

  • Prof. Mark Currie
  • Winter term
  • Tuesdays 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm. Room TBA

Biological, disease, and drug mechanisms are all determined by the three-dimensional arrangement of atoms within biological macromolecules. Therefore, knowledge of molecular structure is fundamental to protein engineering and the development of new therapeutics and vaccines. This course will cover the application of structural biology methods to drug development and biotechnology. Students will be introduced to the modern tools of protein structure determination including Cryo electron microscopy, X-ray crystallography and NMR through lectures and group activities. Lectures will focus on theory, techniques, data collection, analysis, and interpretation, model building and validation, and the advantages and limitations of each method. The applications of these methods to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries including protein engineering, target selection and drugability, lead identification and optimization, rational drug design and drug mechanism of action will be explored through group presentations, case studies and discussions.

BTC2120H Topics in Biotechnology: Decision Analytics in Business, Healthcare & Management

  • Prof. Ningyuan Chen
  • Winter term
  • Tuesdays 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm. Room TBA

Data analysis and decision making are two core components in many industries. In this course, we will walk through major techniques in both components, including descriptive and exploratory data analysis, predictive analytics, causal inference, optimization and simulation. The students are expected to conformably answer the following questions upon the completion of the course: how to visualize and present data to your clients or managers, how to predict patterns in the future from the historical data, how to measure the effectiveness of a policy, how to make best decisions under uncertainty based on the available information.

IMI1001H Innovation and Entrepreneurship

  • Fall term
  • The course will be held online using Quercus and Discord, except for a networking session and a culmination activity, which will be held in person.

In this course, we will begin by looking at the concept of innovation, particularly those that arise from deep knowledge, such as what could arise from university research. By examining the movement from research results to products and services that benefit society, students will get an appreciation of the potential impact of knowledge, be it from their own results or from others.

Through workshops and office hours, students will examine ideas and refine them with consideration of the needs of society, and organize into teams of their choice to tackle a project that has been identified and refined. Ideally, students from research will work with those from business, but this is not required.

Lectures and workshops will introduce entrepreneurial topics in a practical way, with students applying the concepts to specifically examine the feasibility of creating a startup or an organization, for profit or not-for-profit.

IMI2001H Managing Global Health

  • Prof. Laura Derksen
  • Winter term
  • Wednesdays 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Room: DV1148

This course is designed for management students who are interested in organizations with a social goal. We will adopt global health as a central theme. However, the concepts discussed in the course will apply to other contexts that involve behaviour change for social good, including international development, environment and sustainability, and the Canadian health care sector.  

Managing Global Health trains prospective managers and entrepreneurs to approach global health strategy with a focus on the end user. Good health outcomes involve both the customer (the patient) and the provider (the organization, facility, supplier or doctor). The strategic goal of an organization is to improve health outcomes – this requires a clear understanding of both patient and provider perspectives. Students will learn tools from economics and psychology that can be leveraged to impact behaviour.

IMI3001H Biocommercial­isation I: Analysis of Technology Driven Innovation

  • Fall term
  • Mondays 6:30 pm - 8:30PM

In this course through a series of lectures and case discussions, students learn about the formation, financing, and management of early-stage ventures especially as it relates to the (bio)technology and associated medical device space. Topics include opportunity identification and assessment, preclinical and clinical phases, regulatory procedures and pathways, legal issues including patents and venture finance. Students will each be required to select a young, publicly-traded company in which to complete an in-depth analysis, presentation and report.

IMI3003H Biocommercialisation II

  • Instructor – Duncan Jones & Tim Lee
  • Winter term
  • Mondays 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm. Room TBA

This course is a compliment to IMI3001, in which student teams are given the opportunity to learn more about the issues and opportunities facing early-stage (bio)technology ventures through direct experiences working on real projects for select early-stage firms within the community. This experiential learning involves working in teams on select, negotiated work packages in conjunction with the company founders in addition to mentoring by the instructors or TAs. This project work is supplemented with lectures covering practical and applied topics such as project management, client communications, research methods, patent searching and analysis, market research, competitive intelligence and financial modelling. The final assessment involves a presentation and client report.

MUI2030H - Planning for Jobs: Labour Market Transformations and Employment in 21st Century Cities

  • Fall term

The course will start with an overview of recent writings that look at transformative forces related to international trade, corporate restructuring, new skill demands and the implications for labour market performance. It examines how these forces are experienced differently across industries and across socio-economic groups, as well as some of the institutional factors that help to explain widening wage and income disparities in Canada and the U.S. The second half of the course focuses on some of the policy and planning implications of these transformative forces and specifically the role that local practitioners and policy makers can play in addressing sources of socio-economic disparity. Four areas of policy will be considered, including: efforts to link competitiveness-enhancing retraining and industrial/sectoral upgrading initiatives; the creation of innovative new partnerships between employers and labor market intermediaries, such as staffing agencies, labor unions and non-profits; strategies that connect smart-growth and social equity goals; and finally, new forms of labor and community organizing designed to improve workplace justice (e.g., community benefits and living wage movements).

MUI2055H Cities, Industries, and the Environment

  • Instructor - Taylor Brydges
  • Winter term
  • Mondays 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Room L1215

This reading seminar is devoted to the study of the environmental impacts of (mostly urban) industrialization and to past, current and potentially new ways of analyzing and addressing them. The topics discussed range from the history of deforestation and the creation of recycling linkages between firms to the role of institutions in promoting innovative behavior and the impact of geographical distance on the sustainability of industrial practices. Unlike many seminars discussing the relationship between economic growth and the environment, the perspective favored in "Cities, Industry and the Environment" will be generally optimistic.

MUI2080H Intelligent Communities/Smart Cities

  • Instructor – TBA
  • Winter term
  • Schedule TBA  

This course provides an overview of strategies that make up a ‘smart city” and ‘intelligent community’ – approaches to local development that integrate digital infrastructure and information and communication technologies with urban planning processes. Students will study the importance of governance forms, human capital, and equity considerations that are integral to their success. Additional key aspects include analyzing real-time data to better manage resources and congestion, forming partnerships between government, industry and universities to promote digital innovation and economic growth, and strengthening access to broadband technologies to improve the quality of life and public engagement of citizens.

SSM2010H Marketing in Sustainability

  • Prof. Ashish Pujari
  • Winter term
  • Mondays 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Room KN L1230

The course is designed to develop an understanding of: (i) relationship between sustainability and marketing; (ii) linkages between sustainability concerns and people’s behavior including their behavior in markets; (iii) differences between the principles of conventional marketing and sustainability marketing; (iv) sustainability marketing values and strategies; and (v) applications of sustainability marketing concepts and tools to a range of profit and non-profit organizations. The course will include a range of topics such as evolution of marketing, sustainability, and sustainability marketing; elements of sustainability marketing and corporate social responsibility; challenges and opportunities for sustainability marketing; sustainability and people’s (consumer’s) behavior; harnessing people’s behavior for sustainability; sustainability marketing values and objectives; sustainability marketing strategies; sustainability marketing mix including customer solutions, communication, cost, and convenience; innovations and sustainability marketing; future directions of sustainability marketing; and applications of sustainability marketing.

SSM2020H Sustainability Ethics

  • Prof. Len Brooks and Prof. Simon Appolloni
  • Winter term
  • Wednesdays 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Room KN L1230

Ethics and ethical behavior are the critical elements of sustainability management. From a management perspective, ethical behaviour is an integral part of manager’s success while an understanding and respect for environmental, social, and business ethics are critical for designing and implementing sustainability strategies and practices. This course is designed to provide a critical understanding of the underlying ethical principles in sustainability management.

In this course, students will develop an understanding of: (1) the ethics of sustainability and innovation, (2) business governance and ethics. (3) how business views sustainability, (4) how to influence corporate strategy and decision-making through business ethics, and (5) important current and future topics and issues in sustainability and innovative ethics. The focus of the course will be practical and will build upon a historical understanding of ethical developments to offer students a perspective on current practices as well as future prospects.

SSM2030H Applied Sustainability Management

  • 3 industry leaders each teach a four-week module
  • Winter term
  • Mondays 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Room KN L1230

This is a science-based course is designed to provide knowledge and applications of advanced aspects/tools related to sustainability management. The course covers advanced aspects focused on carbon (GHG) measurement and accounting; life cycle assessments; and water efficiency and conservation is different sectors. Accordingly, the course is divided into three modules. In each module, the emphasis will be on application of advanced aspects/tools to sustainability management.

This course will equip students with the industry knowledge and essential skills to manage the risks and opportunities of transitioning an organization to the low carbon economy and prepare them for a sustainable future. Module I of this course will introduce the concept of GHG emissions sources as well as how organizations are setting emission reduction targets and baselines to meet stakeholder expectations. Module II will address the specifications of the assessment of the life cycle GHG emissions of goods and services and life cycle impact assessment. Module III will provide a holistic approach to water footprint as well as inform students about the water use regulations in large buildings in Canada.