Political Economy of Energy
The course aims to provide the basic concepts for understanding the economic implications of energy choices, the reasons for energy policies and the tools to implement them.
Expected learning outcomes:
Knowledge and understanding: The student will have to prove to be familiar with the basic concepts of the discipline and to be able to use the main tools in order to understand the solution of microeconomic problems and interpret empirical evidence. Mastery of the mathematical and statistical tools available in the textbook is of the essence
Applying knowledge and understanding: The student must demonstrate that she has understood the interdependence between the energy system and the economic system, integrating the economic aspects with the technical and institutional ones.
Making judgments: The student must demonstrate that she has developed a critical ability to assess the economic implications of energy sustainability policies.
Communication: the student should be able to answer the questions of both the written examination and the possible oral examination in a clear, convincing and thorough way. The student will learn how to convey results with the help of reports and synthetic graphs.
Lifelong learning skills: the student should be able to show a good learning ability, managing to widen, her knowledge with the use of relevant bibliographic references. The student will have the opportunity to apply the knowledge gained in previous courses integrating it with the additional professional skills that characterize the course.
Knowledge of basic concepts of microeconomics, macroeconomics, and statistics.
Part I (16 HOURS):
Introductory concepts. Energy transitions. The energy system. Final Energy Demand Analysis. The cost of energy supply. International energy markets.
Part II (16 HOURS):
Non-renewable exhaustible resources in the thinking of classical and marginalist economists. The Hotelling model. Determining optimal depletion of non-renewable resources with optimal control theory. Electricity and gas regulation.
Part III (16 HOURS):
Liberalization and Competitiveness. Efficiency and Cost Responsibility. Liberalized market. Renewable sources in the liberalized market. Energy system and economic system.
The course includes frontal lessons during which the themes of the program are discussed.
G. Pireddu. Economia dell’energia. I fondamenti. CLU Editore, u.e.
The assessment is based on a written examination composed of thematic questions aimed at evaluating the actual achievement of the objectives on part the students. In order to evaluate the depth in understanding general theoretical knowledge, the classwork includes open questions on the program’s topics. In their answers the students should be able to show and illustrate the fundamental concepts acquired during their studies. In order to evaluate the ability to apply the economic models discussed at lesson and in the suggested readings, mathematical proofs of some theorems can be required. The written examination is made up of six questions; to each of them a maximum of 6 mark-points is allocated up to grand total of 36 (extra points above 30 signal for a possible laude). The laude can be assigned if the student shows, in his/her answers, a particular ability in deepening the topics of the examination’s questions. The duration of the written examination is 1 hour and 15 minutes. During the examination, the use of notes, books and informatics devices (smartphone, tablet, pc, ecc.) is not allowed.
An oral examination can also be held, if the teacher judges it useful to better ascertain the student’s knowledge. The vote of the oral examination is expressed in scale from 0 to 30, and it is averaged with the vote of written examination (with equal weighting) in order to determine the final vote.
The teacher can offer to the students also a mid-term written examination, which is made up of 4 questions; to each of them a maximum of 9 mark-points is allocated up to grand total of 36 (extra points above 30 signal for a possible laude). In a successive exam session, the students must pass a written examination made up of four questions, related to the remaining part of the study program; the evaluation will follow the same scheme of the mid-term examination. The final mark will be determined by computing the average value between the mid-term and the final examination.