This course examines the role of the government in a market economy. Three broad issues are considered: under what conditions is government intervention in the economy appropriate? When merited what is the most effective form of intervention? What effects do government policies have on incentives and behavior?After examining these questions from a theoretical perspective, the course will turn to analysis of particular government spending programs in the United States including Social Security, various types of publicly-provided insurance, spending on education, and public assistance for the poor. Finally we will study how the government raises revenue through taxation. We will discuss the principles that guide tax design and consider the effects of the tax code on behavior.
The Class: Type: lecture/discussion
Requirements/Evaluation: problem sets, short writing assignments, midterm and final exam
Prerequisites: ECON 110
Distributions: Division II;
Attributes: PHLH Decision-Making by Institutions + Individuals; POEC U.S. Political Economy + Public Policy Course