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Fall 2014 - 62795 - PA393L - Advanced Policy Economics

Economics of Urban and Regional Policy

Instructor(s): Wilson, Robert H.
Unique Number: 62795
Day & Time: W 9:00 am -12:00 pm
Room: SRH 3.216/219
Waitlist Information:For LBJ Students: UT Waitlist Information
Course Overview

Students are required to take an additional three-hour course in policy economics, selected from among a set of courses focusing on the application of economic theory and techniques to a specific area of public policy. Course options include macroeconomics, public finance, regulation, international trade and finance, natural resources and environmental policy, health policy, transportation policy, human resource development, urban and regional economic development, international development, education policy, social policy, and labor economics. Not all options are offered every year. This course is usually taken in the second year. 

Section Description

Economic structure and rates of economic growth vary across geography, as observed in urban-rural, center city-suburb and interregional differentials. The course will explore the theories and empirical analyses used to explain how spatial economies function. By the end of the course, students should be able to employ analytical frameworks and empirical techniques to investigate aspects of urban and regional economies that are relevant to local, state, and federal policy issues.

The factors affecting the evolution of the spatial economy and urban form in the United States, including globalization and economic change, technology, information and telecommunications, poverty, income distribution, and race/ethnicity inequalities, are examined in the first segment. Theoretical and conceptual explanations for uneven economic development across space and of urban and regional economic growth are discussed in the second segment. Various analytical techniques—including location quotients, input-output models, and regional econometric models—used in spatial analysis will be discussed. Then economic determinants of urban form, land use and neighborhood choice are addressed. In the last segment, the course shifts to an explicit focus on urban policy: the constitutional and institutional context of local government, urban services, housing, economic development and growth management and sustainability. The course is most appropriate for students with interests in urban policy, regional and urban development, and state and local government. Although the course focuses principally on the US, attention is given to spatial economies and urban policy in other countries and students can choose to write a paper on cities and regions outside the US.

Students will be evaluated on six elements--two take home exams, one paper (including the oral presentation of the paper), a problem set, a technical memorandum, and class participation.