Emerging Communication Technologies (USC)

Emerging Communication Technologies

Class Number 10441D; Semester 981 Spring 1998
Tuesday evenings, 6:45-10pm, Room 205

Instructor: Bill Dutton, Professor
Office: 5-6pm on T&Th in ASC 309B, or call for appointment
Telephone: (213) 740-2759
FAX: (310) 379-9250
E-mail: wdutton@usc.edu
Web Page: http://www-rcf.usc.edu/~wdutton/
Class Projects from Spring 1998

Course Objectives

This course surveys a wide range of emerging information and communicationtechnologies (ICTs), from superwatches to the Internet and World Wide Web. Studentswill address such questions as
: What are the emerging ICTs ?
What social, technical, and policy factors shape their design and development?
Who are some of the major individuals and companies driving emergent ICTs?
Who will adopt these technologies? How will they diffuse?
Will they fail or succeed?
What impacts could result from their implementation?


The course will be based on lectures, guest speakers, videotapes of varioustechnologies, and seminar discussion. Students are encouraged to get an e-mailaccount at USC and are required to complete and present short (1,000 word) essays on three emerging ICTs’ and contribute these essays to a joint overview of EmergingCommunication Technologies’, which the class will compile and edit.

Grades will be based on the following:

Essay one 20 %
Essay two 20
Essay three 20
Joint Overview 20
Discussion 20
TOTAL 100 %

Texts for this Course

Required Texts available at the USC Bookstore

Baldwin, T. F., McVoy, D. S., and Steinfield, C. (1996), Convergence: IntegratingMedia, Information & Communication (Thousand Oaks and London: SagePublications).

Dutton, W. H. (1996) (ed.), Information and Communication Technologies Visionsand Realities (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press).

Dyson, E. (1997), Release 2.0: A Design for Living in the Digital Age (New York:Broadway Books). Recommended for Further Reading and Reference:

Gates, B. (1995), The Road Ahead (New York and London: Viking), with CD-ROM.

Gilder, G. (1994, orig. 1990), Life After Television, Revised Edition (New York: W. W.Norton).

Negroponte, N. (1995), Being Digital (New York and London: Hodder & Stoughton).

Noll, M. (1997), Highway of Dreams: A Critical View Along the Information Superhighway (Mahway, NJ: LEA).

Pierce, J. R., and Noll, A. M. (1990), Signals: The Science of Telecommunications (NewYork: Scientific American Library).

Topics and Schedule

I will be scheduling guest speakers and possible site visits and have therefore notindicated the date that each topic will be discussed. However, the following topics will be discussed in the order indicated:

1. The Social and Cultural Shaping of ICTs, and Knowledge About ICTsRead: V&R: Ch 3 by Williams and Edge, Ch 5 by Woolgar; try Ch 6 by MacKenzie

2. ICT Trends (IMIC: Ch 1-6) Convergence (IMIC: 1), also read: V&R: Ch 6 by Garnham Telephone (IMIC: Ch 2 and 3), also read V&R: Ch 1 by Freeman Cable and Satellite TV (IMIC: Ch 2 and 4), also read V&R: Ch 13 by Collins Cable-Telco Competiton and Convergence (IMIC: Ch 2 and 5) TV-Computer Competition and Convergence (IMIC: Ch 2 and 6), also read V&R: Ch 22 by Dutton et al.

3. Changing Business and Management Paradigms (IMIC: Ch 7-10) New ICT Management Paradigms (IMIC: Ch 7), also read V&R: Ch 7 by Freeman Changing Conceptions and Responses of Consumers (IMIC: Ch 8) Forecasting and Realizing a Market (IMIC: Ch 9), review V&R: Ch 6 by Garnham Competitive Strategies (IMIC: Ch 10

)4. Driving Forces and Constraints The Economic Payoffs of Production and Use, read V&R: Ch 18 by Kraemer and Dedrick, Ch 19 by Gillespie and Cornford Uncertainties of Communication Policy and Regulation (IMIC: Ch 11), also read V&R: Ch 20 by Baer International and Global Competition and Policy (IMIC: Ch 12), and V&R: Ch 21 by Mansell Impacts on Consumers (IMIC: Ch 13), and V&R: Ch 10 by Peltu et a.l

5. Perspectives on the Information Society (focus on Dyson’s book) The Information Society (V&R: Ch 1 by Freeman, Ch 2 by Miles) Read Esther Dyson, or Nick Negroponte, or George Gilder and prepare to present and critique their perspective on the future of communications.

6. ICTs in Social and Institutional Contexts of Adoption and Use The Firm (V&R: Ch 9 by Coombs and Hull, 11 by Goddard and Richardson) The Office (V&R: Ch 8 by Webster) The Household (V&R: Ch 12 by Silverstone and Haddon) Educational Settings (V&R: Ch 14 by Gill and Cochrane) Government Service Delivery (V&R: Ch 15 by Taylor et al.) Politics and Elections (V&R: Ch 16 by Raab et al.)

7. Summary and ConclusionsRead V&R: Ch 17 by Melody

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