|Prerequisite||ECNU311 OR ECNU312|
|Module Co-ordinator||Dr Willem Sas|
30% Coursework, 10% group presentation & 60% examination
Both of the assignments focus on current real-world policy debates and require critical thinking and extensive reading of the academic literature, as well as other, relevant documents. The final exam is focused on the material covered throughout the lectures.
MODULE INTRODUCTION, AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
The primary aim of the module is to study the role of the government in the economy. Gaining insight into the theory of public finance, we critically assess real-world systems of government as well as various policy issues.
Public economic policies – such as the provision of public goods, redistribution, or the correction of market failures by use of taxation, regulation or social security – will be analysed using the framework of ‘welfare economics’. In this light, a general overview of (UK) government spending and revenue raising is provided. We also introduce elements of ‘political economy’, to obtain a broader understanding of the decision-making and incentives of politicians and bureaucrats, as well as the potential government failures these incentives can bring about.
The allocation of spending and tax instruments across the various levels of government in multi-tiered countries will also be discussed, to evaluate the UK devolution process and Brexit against this backdrop of ‘fiscal federalism’.
Emphasis is placed on developing communication skills that will be useful both in dissertations and when going for job interviews.
LEARNING OUTCOMES AND SKILLS DEVELOPED
By the end of the course, students should be capable of:
RECOMMENDED READING LIST
Be up-to-date with current (economic) policy issues and debates, following economic and political news.
Rosen, H.S. and Gayer, T.: Public Finance, 2014 (10th ed.), Mc Graw Hill.