Economics, Entrepreneurship, and Social Justice

II - July 20–August 6, 2021
Modality, Day & Time:
Monday–Friday, 9:10 a.m.–11:00 p.m. and 1:10–3:00 p.m.

Isabelle Delalex, Angela Paulk

Algebra 1. This course is intended for current 10th, 11th, and 12th graders. Younger students might be interested in taking Introduction to Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

“I gained immense knowledge about economics and entrepreneurship. I learned a lot about how to use my critical thinking and business skills.”  – Melissa H. | Blue Bell, Pennsylvania

Course Description

Can economic growth be reconciled with sustainability? Can social entrepreneurs find solutions to climate adaptation challenges? How do we incentivize fishermen to conserve the world’s fisheries? Can microfinance loans to the entrepreneurial poor reduce global poverty? What practices can businesses adopt to align their bottom lines with sustainability? How can we do well while doing good – and while embracing principles of equity, access, participation, and human rights?

In this course participants are introduced to key concepts and skills associated with social entrepreneurship, finance, and economics and are consequently enabled to think proactively about solving some of the world’s biggest problems – while also probing how profitability and social justice might intersect and at times come into conflict.

Students are introduced to economic concepts such as supply and demand, utility, macro- and microeconomics, the time value of money, and the use of indicators. They also engage with key concepts relating to business formation and management, raising funds using debt or equity, and financial accounting.

Participants begin to see some of the largest social problems we face today as essentially economic challenges – and are then asked, through a mix of projects, debates, field trips, and case studies, to come up with potential solutions, their work culminating with a social enterprise pitch competition.


Isabelle Delalex

Isabelle Delalex is an adjunct professor at Pace University's Lubin School of Business and also at Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, where she teaches courses in finance and economics. At Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs, she serves as a faculty adviser to graduate students participating in the Capstone consultancy projects. In the private sector, she was the vice president and director of industry research at the Securities Industry Association after working for five years as an analyst at Goldman Sachs. Her professional experience also includes consulting work for the United Nations and several not-for-profit organizations. Delalex holds a master's degree in international affairs from Columbia University.

Angela Paulk

Angela Paulk is a financial services professional with a broad background honed in grassroots development, investment banking, and business advisory/consulting for leading global corporates (e.g. Citi, Deutsche Bank, Maersk) and high growth companies (now portfolio companies of S&P and BCG). She began her finance career as an investment analyst and is currently supporting high growth/transitioning companies with independent strategic advisory and executive bandwidth pre/post fundraising. Angela holds MBAs from Columbia Business School and London Business School and a BA in politics from The University of Georgia.

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Specific course detail such as hours and instructors are subject to change at the discretion of the University. Not all instructors listed for a course teach all sections of that course.