Spring 2017 - 61575 - PA393K - Applied Microeconomics for Policy Analysis

This class will familiarize the student with basic concepts and tools of microeconomic analysis used to frame public policy debate. At a minimum, the class will create a basic understanding of the key economic arguments encountered in policy debates and how to apply economic ideas to simple policy analysis. The approach followed in this class will be to present a rapid, spare and concise description of the theory, then show how it can be applied to practical policy issues. Themes to be given particular attention will include the impact of government policy and regulation on corporate behavior, industrial organization, the operation of imperfectly competitive markets, and the global economic system. Approximately the first 2/3 of this class will be an exposition of basic microeconomic concepts. The remaining 1/3 of the class will be organized around student presentations designed to explore how these concepts can be applied to real world policy issues. Grades will be based on problem sets (20%), presentations (30%), a mid-term(20%), and a final(30%). Textbook: Cabral, Introduction to Industrial Economics and assigned supplementary readings.