Learning outcomes of the course unit
Knowledge and understanding
The course aims to provide students with the basic concepts and principles of economic policy. In particular, the course intends to provide students with fundamental knowledge related to: the “logic” of economic policy; individual and social preferences; the pareto criterion and the new welfare economics; theories of justice and social welfare functions; social preferences and institutions; market failures; fundamental elements of macroeconomics; monetary policy, fiscal policy and aspects related to microeconomic policy.
Applying knowledge and understanding
The student will be able to maintain and discuss clearly, through appropriate arguments, possible proposals and considerations related to economic policy issues, such as the logic of economic policy or the efficiency of diverse economic policies on the basis of different theoretical models.
At the end of the course students will have acquired the ability to critically interpret the main economic events at the center of the national and international debate of economic policy, by evaluating their logic and effects in the light of the different approaches and theoretical models analyzed.
Students will be able to communicate their own comments and ideas on the issues of economic policy analyzed in the course to various interlocutors effectively and appropriately.
Student will acquire the ability to undertake, in the most independent way possible, the analysis and the understanding of the logic behind alternative economic policies and of their potential effects.
Course contents summary
The subject of the course is the analysis of the economic action of the public sector. The course is divided into four main parts.
The first part considers the definition of criteria or objectives of economic policy. This part focuses on the following topics: individual and social preferences; the pareto criterion and the new welfare economics; theories of justice, social welfare functions and social optimum; social preferences and institutions (state and market); market failures: micro and macroeconomic aspects.
The second part introduces some fundamental elements of macroeconomics in order to analyze the economic policy at a macro level. This part analyzes: the simple keynesian model, the IS-LM model, the AD-AS model, models in open economies, the idea of multi-level approach.
The third part considers the monetary policy, the fiscal policy and aspects related to microeconomic policy.
The last part of the course analyzes the European integration, focusing on the theory of the Optimum Currency Area, evaluating costs and benefits of a common currency.
N. ACOCELLA, Fondamenti di politica economica, Carocci editore, 2011, chapters 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 and sections 1-3 of chapter 8.
V. VALLI, A. GEUNA and R. BURLANDO, Politica economica e macroeconomia, Carocci editore, 2010, only chapters: 1,2,3,4,5, 6, 11,12,13, 14, and 17.
N.G. MANKIW and M.P. TAYLOR, L’essenziale di economia, Bologna, Zanichelli, 2012, only chapter 29.
Assessment methods and criteria
The knowledge and understanding will be assessed with two open questions (each worth 5 points), which ask a short answer that is specifically aimed at verifying the knowledge of the concepts and principles discussed in the course.
The communication skills, the ability to apply the acquired knowledge through appropriate arguments and reflections and the autonomy of judgment will be assessed with two open questions (each worth 10 points), structured on several points which require the articulation of a discourse which integrates different notions acquired during the course in a coherent and logical way.
Learning skills will be assessed on the basis of an assessment across the various answers to the different questions of the exam.
Further information on the readings may be indicated during the course and reported online.