This module studies economic policy as the equilibrium outcome of strategic interaction among rational individuals. It uses economic theory to explain issues such as what determines the size and form of redistributive programmes, the burden of taxation across alternative tax bases, the extent and type of public goods provision, the extent of corruption by public officials, and political business cycles.
Full module specification
|Module title:||Political Economics|
BEE2025 and BEE2026
|Duration of module:||
Duration (weeks) - term 2: |
The aim of the module is to study the interdependence between economics and politics. Emphasis will be given not only on analysing theories of political economy but also on the empirical evidence and the policy implications of these models.
ILO: Module-specific skills
- 1. demonstrate how political forces shape markets and other economic institutions and how economic motivations permeate the political environment
ILO: Discipline-specific skills
- 2. demonstrate analytical skills, specifically the ability to use theoretical models to analyse practical economic problems
ILO: Personal and key skills
- 3. demonstrate analytical and critical thinking
- 4. deliver coherent argument in written work
Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)
|Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities||Guided independent study||Placement / study abroad|
Details of learning activities and teaching methods
|Category||Hours of study time||Description|
|Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities||22||Lectures|
|Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities||5||Tutorials|
|Guided Independent study||123|
Summative assessment (% of credit)
|Coursework||Written exams||Practical exams|
Details of summative assessment
|Form of assessment||% of credit||Size of the assessment (eg length / duration)||ILOs assessed||Feedback method|
|Final Exam||80||2 hours||1-4||Written Feedback|
|Problem Set||20||1,500-2,500||1-4||Written Feedback|
Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)
|Original form of assessment||Form of re-assessment||ILOs re-assessed||Timescale for re-assessment|
|Final Exam||Exam (80%) 2 hours||1-4||August Examination Period|
|Problem Set||Problem Set (20%)||1-4||August Examination Period|
- Social choice theory (Rational preference, Aggregation of individual preferences, Majority voting and Dictatorship, Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem)
- The single-peaked preference theorem and its applications (Hotelling model, Downsian electoral competition, The model of legislature, Commitment problem in the committee system, Coalitional government formation)
- Strategic voting
- Collective action problem
- Applications to topics such as redistributive programmes, taxation, government debt, corruption, etc.
Indicative learning resources - Basic reading
Gehlbach, S, (2013), Formal Models of Domestic Politics, Cambridge University Press. Here is more info about the book: http://www.amazon.com/Domestic-Politics-Analytical-Methods-Research/dp/1107610427/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8.
Varian, Hal R., (2014), Intermediate Microeconomics, W. W. Norton & Company.
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Last revision date