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Management of Complex Systems Degree Programs

Department of Management of Complex Systems

Management encompasses the science and art of how organizations (private and public) accomplish goals using available resources efficiently, effectively, and sustainably. Faculty in the Department of Management of Complex Systems focus on adaptive management of complex coupled human-technology and human-natural systems, including for-profit and not-for-profit organizations and public and private enterprises. Broadly speaking, arrangements of people, organizations, information, technology, and the natural world operating together for a common purposes constitute the sort of complex adaptive systems that we aim to understand and shape through doctoral research and training.  In particular, modern management deals with challenges emerging from the complex interdependencies of multiple stakeholders working together in service relationships to accomplish complementary goals. Likewise, lands and resource management must address challenges arising from changing global earth systems and governance that impact land use, conservation, ecosystem services and climate adaptation. 

The Management of Complex Systems (MCS) department oversees two graduate programs, the M.M. in MIST and the Ph.D. in MCS, as well as an undergraduate major, Data Science and Analytics (DSA) and minor, Management Analytics and Decision-Making (MAD)

For more, see visit the Management of Innovation, Sustainability and Technology (MIST) website.

Data Science and Analytics (DSA)

The data science and analytics (DSA) major addresses the increasing demand for adept data analysts by combining coursework in applied data science with coursework in economics and cognitive, political and management science — areas where real-world problem solving increasingly relies on data-driven analysis to inform decision-making.

Data are generated everywhere, increasingly enveloping human experience by mediating our interactions with the natural, social and built world. Yet data often require refinement, reformatting and critical analysis before they can become usable information. To make data-informed decisions, such as raising or lowering taxes, hiring or dismissing an employee or investing or divesting in a business sector, for example, people need understand how to appropriately and ethically harness, classify and analyze data, along with methods for extracting actionable insights and effectively communicating results.

Minor in Management Analytics and Decision-Making (MAD) 

The MAD Minor will immerse you in interdisciplinary courses that foster analytical skills, communication skills, and critical thinking about managing data and analytics in complex environments. It will teach you skills that will help you succeed in interdisciplinary environments, solve problems, and manage resources mindful of risk, uncertainty, human dimensions, and sustainability. It will cultivate skills for managing people, data, and the natural world – the interface of all three can help you explore sustainable growth in human and built environments. The MAD Minor will provide you the tools to collect, analyze, manage, visualize and communicate data for diverse management focusing on People, Planet, and Profit.

Courses rely on case studies and applied projects to exemplify the diverse challenges encountered when simultaneously seeking

You will engage in hands-on, practical experiences with data-driven analytics, professional communication, and entrepreneurship to acquire knowledge needed to understand and manage complex systems, including:

Critical Thinking and Analytics for Management of Complex Systems

You will identify and use appropriate analytical, quantitative, and data-oriented techniques and apply reasoning to evaluate case studies for strategic decision-making in a multi-disciplinary setting and in the management of complex systems.

Communication of Quantitative Analysis, Results, and Implications

You will communicate effectively in classroom settings and with business and community stakeholders, preparing and delivering clear, persuasive, and professional oral and written presentations.

Leadership and Teamwork in Practice

You will apply principles and practices of effective leadership and teamwork in classroom and project settings.

Ethics and Sustainability

You will apply knowledge of ethical and legal requirements and of professional, societal and cultural contexts of coupled environments.

View Course Catalog (navigate to "School of Engineering" and select program/catalog year)