Course Detail

Life Sciences: Innovation and Finance (34205)

Course Description by Faculty

  • Fairbank, Joshua
  • Content
    Healthcare comprises over 1/6 of US GDP and is growing at more than double the rate of the rest of the economy. It is a sector where innovation can be measured in lives saved.

    The life sciences include biotech, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and instruments, and healthcare IT. Covering both innovation and finance this course examines the various roles of leaders and investors in this industry. Students will learn to evaluate companies and deals from the perspectives of founders, VCs, the board, management, investment bankers, PE, and public/crossover investors.

    Healthcare is a highly regulated industry where the government grants legal temporary monopolies. At the same time innovation in healthcare is bound by the rules of human biology - “software does what it’s told, biology does not.” The course will cover intellectual property, regulators, and the inevitable scientific set-backs along the way.

    One of the goals of this course is to remove the perceived barrier to entry to a career in the life sciences. Cases and guest speakers have been selected to highlight a wide range of backgrounds. This class is for students considering a career in healthcare whether as an entrepreneur, an investor, an executive, or on Wall Street.

    • Lectures

    • Discussion

    • Case Studies

    • Group Projects

    • Ethics discussion/component

  • Prerequisites
    There is no established track to becoming a VC or an entrepreneur, rather various backgrounds lend different strengths. Similarly, there are no firm prerequisites for this course. No healthcare experience or scientific background will be assumed. A general understanding of public and private financial markets, economics, and basic accounting will all be very helpful.
  • Grades
    30% Class participation 30% Assignments and Cases 15% Midterm (take-home) 25% Final Project
    • Graded homework assignments

    • Graded attendance/participation

    Assessment & Testing
    • Midterm

  • Syllabus
  • Spring 2019Section: 34205-81M 6:00PM-9:00PMGleacher Center206
Description and/or course criteria last updated: February 26 2019