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Course 2019-2020 a.y.

30508 - PUBLIC ECONOMICS

BIG
Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 23

BIG (8 credits - I sem. - OB  |  SECS-P/03)
Course Director:
SIMONE GHISLANDI

Classes: 23 (I sem.)
Instructors:
Class 23: SIMONE GHISLANDI


Mission & Content Summary
MISSION

In OECD countries the average Government expenditure amounts to 40% of the total GDP. A similar figure applies to the average country-specific burden of taxation, taxation representing the main source of Government revenue. Pensions, healthcare, public debt, taxes, inequality and redistribution are all topics at the centre of the economic debate in virtually all contemporary democratic countries, representing crucial concerns for many of their citizens and often driving the political agenda. Should we encourage Government intervention in the economy? On what grounds? What are the different instruments the Government can use in order to achieve its goals? And what should these goals even be? The aim of the course is to equip students with the intellectual framework needed to attempt reasonable answers to these difficult questions. The course builds on robust theoretical and empirical arguments, together with sound institutional analyses, in order to achieve an in-depth understanding of Government reasons to intervene and ways of intervention.

CONTENT SUMMARY

Part 1: Introduction to Public Economics:

  • General theoretical and empirical tools.
  • Market failures and government intervention.
  • Inequality and theory of justice.

Part 2: Government revenues:

  • Taxation.

Part 3: Government expenditure:

  • Healthcare.
  • Pensions.
  • Education.

Part 4: Further topics in Public Economics:

  • Monopoly, Oligopoly and Government intervention.
  • Migration and welfare.
  • Macroeconomics of public debt.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)
KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING
At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Identify the main pros and cons of government intervention in the economy.
  • Discuss the impact of major public interventions. 
  • Understand the philosophical basis of public interventions.
APPLYING KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING
At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Explain the aims and limitations of Government intervention in the economy.
  • Assess critically many important topics commonly debated by the public opinion and related to the role and the action of Governments in Europe and around the world.

Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Exercises (exercises, database, software etc.)
DETAILS

We present a series of exercises sections in order to help students to familiarize with the concepts presented in class.


Assessment methods
  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  •   x x
    ATTENDING AND NOT ATTENDING STUDENTS

    Non attendants students have the same exam as attendant ones. 


    Teaching materials
    ATTENDING AND NOT ATTENDING STUDENTS

    The slides of the course represent the main studying material. Two books are used for the parts of Prof. Ghislandi. Exact chapters are indicated for each session.

    • J. GRUBER, Public Finance and Public Policy, Freeman and Worth, 2016 (ISBN/EAN: 9781319154165).
    • M.J. SANDEL, Justice, Penguin Books, 2009.

    For the other parts, further readings are indicated before class.

    Last change 01/06/2019 17:42