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5EN552 Economic Theory of Politics

Instructors: Jiří Schwarz, Aleš Rod
Language: English
Course Dates: February 20th, 2012 — May 18th, 2012
Classes: Wed 11:00—12:30, Room Rb106; Fri 7:30—9:00, 9:15—10:45, RB 106; W. Churchill Sq. 4, Prague
Office Hours: see ISIS page of your teacher for details

Course Description, Learning Outcomes and Competences
This course combines selected topics from Political Economy, Public Choice and Economics of Public Sector. Within the course students will learn how methodos of economic analysis can be applied to issues in politics and public sector, including the role and function of government, and governmental decision-making; the intersection between public and private interests; the connection between voters, politicians, and the economy; and the effect and evolution of governmental institutions.

Aims of the Course
The course is intended to:

  • Provide students with knowledge of approaches to study social choice and politics
  • Make students familiar with mainstream research directions in the field of Economics of Public Sector
  • Develop skills in modeling people’s behavior
  • Develop skills in presentating and defending people’s opinion

Course Assessment Methods
The final grade will be calculated based on the grades for foour assignments: class participation and the results of successful responses and interventions during classes (ACTIVITY, COMMENT), term paper and its presentation (PRESENTATION), and final exam (PC TEST).

Main Textbooks:
Stiglitz, J. E., Economics of the Public Sector (3rd edition), 2000 (cze version – kekebooks page – 5EN502)
Mueller, D., Public Choice (3rd edition), 2003

Additional Readings:
Jha, R., Modern Public Economics, 1998
Persson T., Tabellini, G., Political Economics: Explaining Economic Policy, 2000
Acemoglu, D., Robinson, J., Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy, 2006

Economic Theory of Politics-ST 2011/2012- Literature

1.

a) Rules of the game for seminar ETP

b) John Stuart Mill: On Commerce

c) Current challenges for an economic policy and potential of economics

2.  George J. Stigler – The Process and Progress of Economics

2.  James M. Buchanan – The Constitution of Economic Policy

3.  Gary S. Becker – The Economic way of looking at life

3.  G.Becker, K.Murphy : The Family and The State

4.  H.Shoeck- Envy: A Theory of Social Behavior – Man the Envier (3-17); Envy in Language (17-33)

4.  Helmut Schoeck – Envy: A Theory of Social Behavior – In Praise of Poverty: From Sumptuary Laws to Contempt for the Affluent Society (253-277); Envy as Tax Collector (385-394)

5. Mancur Olson – The Rise and Decline of Nations: Economic Growth, Stagflation, and Social Rigidities (17-74)

5.  Ch. Kukathas – The Cultural Construction of Society

6.  W.Mitchell, C.Munger – Economic Models of Interest Groups An Introductory Survey

7.  Duncan Black – On the Rationale of Group Decision-Making

7. J. Buchanan: Pressure Groups, Special interests and the Constitution

8. W.A. Niskanen – Bureaucracy: A Final Perspective

8. Robert D. Tollison – Rent seeking

9.  James M. Buchanan –Why Does Government Grow?

9. W. A. Niskanen –Autocratic, Democratic, and Optimal Government: A Sketch

9. Gordon Tullock – What Is To Be Done?

10.  Bryan Caplan – Classical Public Choice and the Failure of Rational Ignorance

10. W. A. Niskanen – A Reformulation of Voting Theory

11. A. Alesina – The Electoral Consequences of Large fiscal Adjustments

11. Robert H. Frank – Understanding conspicuous consumption (In luxury fever)

12.  William D. Nordhaus – The Political Business Cycle

12. E. Colombatto – Markets, Morals, and Policy-Making: A New Defence of Free-Market Economics (Routledge Foundations of the Market Economy)

12. A.Melzer- The global financial crisis of 2007-9

13. Bryan Caplan –Persuasion, Slack, and Traps: How Can Economists Change the World?

13. Anthony de Jasay –Parrot-Talk