7 August 2021
Politics and Globalisation
This course will introduce public policy and globalization in such a way that it will enable participants to understand how to approach a wide range of important political and economic policy problems and participate in public policy debates. In addition to lectures and seminars covering key aspects of public policy and public finance, the course will feature a series of talks from former leading politicians, policymakers, advisors, central bankers and civil servants on applied topics raised in the course.
Guest speakers in previous years have included the Chief Economist of the Bank of England, Andy Haldane; former Cabinet Minister Rt. Hon Ruth Kelly; the former Chief Economist at Lloyds Bank Trevor Williams; and Chris Snowdon from the Institute of Economic Affairs amongst others. Alberto Asquer, Lecturer in Public Finance and Management at SOAS and author of the recently published book Public Sector Revenue – Principles, Policies and Management (Routledge, 2017), have delivered lectures in public finance previously. There will also be field trips and in the past student have visited the Bank of England and the Houses of Parliament.
This course is taught at an intermediate level and aimed at undergraduate and postgraduate students as well as professionals. Prior study of economics is not a pre-requisite for this course: the material is relevant for anybody who is studying for an economics degree or a degree in a related subject. It is also suitable for anyone who is studying or has studied Politics, Political Economy, Public Policy, Sociology, Law or Mathematics/Statistics at undergraduate level. The course is also relevant to public policy practitioners from government or industry. This course will apply economic principles to public policy and globalization. Underlying the course will be the presentation of a set of approaches to economics that will enable participants to take part in debates about public policy and public finance at a theoretical and practical level.
As well as providing the background of public finance and public policy that will allow participants to understand how to better approach a wide range of public policy problems, the course will feature a series of talks from former leading politicians, policymakers, advisors, central bankers and civil servants on applied topics raised in the course. This course is designed and taught by Philip Booth and Andre Alves. Philip Booth is Professor of Finance, Public Policy and Ethics at St Mary's University and former Academic and Research Director at the Institute of Economic Affairs. Andre Alves is Research Director at the Institute for Political Studies of the Catholic University of Portugal and Reader in Economics, Political Economy, and Public Policy at St Mary’s University.
The topics to be covered include:
- Brexit, trade and globalisation
- Theory and general principles: market failure and government failure
- Overview of public finance, levels of public spending and functions on which governments spend money at different stages of development
- Financing government spending by taxation – the impacts of different taxes, principles of good taxes and the sort of tax systems we see in practice
- Sub-national government – arguments for and against decentralisation and the different approaches that are taken in different countries; direct democracy
- How government debt finances spending, an examination of its build up and what happens when debt becomes too high
- Behavioural economics and public policy
- Public choice economics - 'the economics of politics'
- Interest groups and public policy - the economics of rent seeking
- Theories of institutional change and economic development
- Debates about fiscal policy, monetary policy and central banking (visit to the Bank of England).
The course will include various case studies taken from the list of topics below:
- Minimum wages
- Externalities and ‘sin’ taxes
- The economics of prisons
- The financial crisis
- Institutions, foreign aid and development
- Modern slavery
- Pay-as-you-go social security systems - is the West bankrupt?
- Institutions and the preservation of the environment
- Healthcare and education – public policy and 'market failure'
- Investment, research and development
Professor Philip Booth - Professor of Finance, Public Policy and Ethics at St Mary's University and former Academic and Research Director at the Institute of Economic Affairs
Undergraduate, postgraduate students and professionals. Prior study of economics is not a pre-requisite for this course: the material is relevant for anybody who is studying for an economics degree or a degree in a related subject. It is also suitable for anyone who is studying or has studied Politics, Political Economy, Public Policy, Sociology, Law or Mathematics/Statistics at undergraduate level. The course is also relevant to public policy practitioners from government or industry.
The course aims to apply economic principles to public policy making, but using a framework based on wider assumptions than those that underpin the traditional way of thinking about such matters in undergraduate economics courses. As such, it will overlap with the discipline of political economy. After taking the course, students will understand public policy and public finance problems from a wide range of perspectives. Students will then be given a grounding in areas of economics for which Nobel Prizes have been awarded in the last 30 years and which provide a wider perspective of public policy issues. This includes public choice economics, Austrian economics, behavioural economics and institutional economics. The course also aims to give students the ability to apply the ideas to a set of contemporary public policy problems.
You must check with the relevant office of your institution if you will be awarded credit, but many institutions will allow this. In general, you’ll earn 3 credits in the US system, and 7.5 ECTS in the European system. Warwick will provide any necessary supporting evidence to help evaluate the worth of the course.
GBP 2070: Tuition fee (includes a 10% early booking discount, social programme and guest lecture series)
We offer enhanced discounts for Warwick alumni, Warwick study abroad partners and group bookings of 5+ students