Courses NonDegree Display 2017-2018

Course Description To PDF
Course title Political Economy
Course code EBC4096
ECTS credits 6,5
Assessment None
Period Start End Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri
2 30-10-2017 22-12-2017 X X
Level Advanced
Coordinator Kristof Bosmans
For more information:
Language of instruction English
The goal of this course is to gain understanding in how economic theory can be used to study collective decision-making and the interactions between economics and politics.

Taxation, expenditure and regulatory policies enacted by the government have a significant impact on economic outcomes. Do these policies reflect the preferences of the people of the country? Democratic governments are formed by politicians chosen through an electoral process. How do the motivations of the politicians affect their choice between providing efficient levels of public goods and retaining rents for themselves? Do elections check the rent-seeking activities of the politicians and result in a more competent government? Which electoral rules are more successful in achieving this goal? Different constitutions lay out different procedures for political decision making. What are the effects of different constitutions on policy? Some policies can have a large impact on a small group of people resulting in the formation of special-interest groups who lobby to affect policy in their favor. How does lobbying influence policy?
We study these and related questions by modeling the interactions between politics and economics as a game between voters and politicians. Different political institutions are modeled by appropriately defining the “rules” of the game. We use game theory to analyze the nature and economic implications of this strategic interaction. Furthermore, we analyze how (some of) the theoretical predictions hold up to empirical testing.
Persson T and G Tabellini, 2000. Political Economics: Explaining Economic Policy. Cambridge: MIT Press. In addition, we will use a number of articles.
A microeconomics course at the master's level is a required prerequisite. The course assumes an understanding of standard game-theoretic equilibrium concepts, of multivariable calculus, and of statistics and econometrics.
Teaching methods PBL / Presentation / Lecture / Groupwork
Assessment methods Final Paper / Participation / Written Exam
Evaluation in previous academic year For the complete evaluation of this course please click "here"
This course belongs to the following programmes / specialisations
Master Economics Electives
Master Economics Public Economics
Master Fiscale Economie Economics Electives
SBE Exchange Master Master Exchange Courses
SBE Non Degree Courses Master Courses