The course aims to provide general and specific knowledge of the theoretical and institutional reasons underlying public intervention in the economy, with particular regard to the macroeconomic context.
This involves a solid understanding of the main well-established macroeconomic theories, as well as a general grasp of some of the main economic policy issues of systemic relevance. The topics covered include the analytical models connected to the theory, although they are treated in a sufficiently concise and simplified fashion.
Knowledge and understanding: the student must demonstrate to understand the issues concerning public intervention in the economy at a systemic level; moreover, he/she must prove to master the main operating mechanisms of the economic systemintended as an integrated whole, in the framework of the modern perspectives of economic analysis.
Ability to apply knowledge and understanding: the student must prove to be able to apply the knowledge acquired to the main public intervention instruments and economic policy schemes. To this end, the teacher will illustrate the relevance and the effects of fiscal policy, monetary policy and commercial policyduring his classes, integrating the theoretical analysis and the basic economic models with examples, applications, dataset and discussions of case studies and real problems concerning contemporary economies. Such problems will bedealt with during the office hours for the students who do not attend the classes.
Autonomy of judgment:the student must demonstrate to be able to apply and contextualise the knowledgeacquired, using the conceptual and theoretical schemes in specific areas and applying them to real cases. For example, the student must be able to recognise some forms of monetary policy (manoeuvres on interest rates, manoeuvres on the money stock, etc.) and of fiscal policy (expansive policies, debt/deficit containment policies, etc.). She must be able to express an autonomous and structured judgment on the relevant effects of these policies, using the basic concepts and analyses of modern economic theory.
Communication skills: the student must be able to respond in a clear, cogent and exhaustive fashion both to the questions in the written test and to those of the oral exam.
Learning skills: the student must demonstrate good learning skills by deepening her knowledge on bibliographic references, depending on the field of study. She must be able to analyse and evaluate the impacts of the economic policy intervention schemes on economic sectors and contexts.
A basic knowledge of microeconomics is required. Familiarity with some basic elements of general mathematics, although not strictly necessary, may facilitate the understanding of the topics covered. The teacher will provide the appropriate bibliographic indications for students lacking mathematical skills.
1st lectures block (24 hours)
Macroeconomics as a science. Data in macroeconomics. Domestic Product: where it comes from and where it goes. The monetary system: what it is and how it words. Inflation: causes, effects and social costs. The open economy. Unemployment. Economic Growth I: capital accumulation and demographic growth. Economic Growth II: technology, empirical data and economic policy.
2nd lectures block (24 hours)
Introduction to economic fluctuations. Aggregate Demand I: the IS-LM model. Aggregate Demand II: applying the IS-LM model. Revisiting the open economy: the Mundell-Fleming model and exchange rate regimes. Aggregate Supply and the short-run trade-off between inflation and unemployment.
3rd lectures block (24 hours)
Stabilisation policies. Public debt. Currency areas and the European economic and monetary union. Conumption. Investment. The financial system: opportunities and risks.
Lectures and weekly TA classes.
N.G. Mankiw, M. P. Taylor, Macroeconomia, Zanichelli, u.e. –
Grading is based on a written test, composed in part by open question on the topics of the course and in part by numerical and operational exercises, covering the themes tackled in the lectures and in the TA classes. When answering the theoretical questions and the numerical exercises, students will have to prove their ability to outline both the fundamental concepts acquired during the course and the formalised models dealt with in the lectures, in the TA sessions and in the suggested texts. If the teacher deems it necessary, an oral test may take place, in order to assess more thoroughly the attainment of the educational goals.