Spring 2018 - 60760 - PA 388K – Advanced Topics in Public Policy
Environmental and Energy Economics
Restricted to PhD students. Open to PhD students in other departments.
This is a doctoral course in environmental and energy economics that will provide the foundational knowledge for advanced study in this field. Field courses are typically two semesters in length, so the material we will cover is abbreviated relative to a full-year course. We will cover topics including optimal non-renewable natural resource extraction; externalities, public goods and commons (e.g., fisheries); the economics of pollution control (including policy instrument choice), climate change, regulation and enforcement, and valuation of environmental amenities and disamenities, The course will be taught as a seminar; students will read 5-8 assigned journal articles and/or working papers per week and come to class prepared to discuss them.
Prerequisites, Course Requirements and Grading
All enrolled students are expected to have completed at least one doctoral course in microeconomic theory and one doctoral course in econometrics. Enrolled students must be comfortable reading and discussing papers published in peer-reviewed economics journals. Students’ performance will be assessed on the basis of their contributions during weekly class meetings, as well as several written products. Written course requirements will include a significant research proposal and two referee reports critiquing a published or working paper in environmental economics.
Upon completion of the course, doctoral students will be familiar with both the classic foundational papers and models in the environmental economics literature, and with current empirical papers applying these concepts to major environmental policy problems. Along with basic doctoral coursework in micro theory and econometrics, the course will help prepare students to write one or more dissertation papers in environmental economics, and to embark on a research and teaching career in this rapidly growing field.