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The European Economy

Module Code: EC303B

Module Title: European Economy

  • ECTS Weighting: 5
  • Semester/Term Taught: Michaelmas Term
  • Contact Hours: 20 hours of lectures and 4 hours of tutorials
  • Module Personnel: Lecturer - Professor John O'Hagan

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, you will be able to:

  • Review and summarise published material on various key aspects of European economic integration.
  • Explain the importance and relevance of the information contained in this reading material on European economic integration.
  • Explain and apply some basic economic theory and diagrams to issues of European economic policy.
  • Compare and contrast, using this theoretical economics framework, different aspects of the policy debate surrounding European economic integration.
  • Formulate a balanced, critical judgment on the status of each of these debates.

Module Learning Aims

The aim of this course is to equip students with a critical understanding of the major issues facing the European economy. The course provides a blend of descriptive information, theory and empirical analysis. The emphasis is on economic issues but these issues are studied in their political, institutional, and historical context. Theoretical analysis forms an essential part of the course and requires knowledge of intermediate micro- and macroeconomics. Particular attention is devoted to some policy areas in which EU co-ordination has progressed furthest: internal market, regional policy, factor mobility, agriculture, and competition policy. The course is suitable for any JS student who has taken Economics in his/her SF year and all Visiting Students who have acquired an equivalent level of Economics training.

Module Content

  • Historical evolution of the European Union.
  • Law, institutions and budget.
  • Decision making: fiscal federalism, distribution of power and legitimacy.
  • Economic growth. Facts and explanations.
  • Employment. Performance, labour market rigidities and EU labour market institutions.
  • Location effects, economic geography and regional policy.
  • Agriculture: reasons for intervention, history, reforms and outlook.

Recommended Reading List

Baldwin, R. and Wyplosz, C. (2015) (5th edition), The Economics of European Integration, McGraw-Hill.

El-Agraa, A.M. (2011). The European Union: Economics and Policies, (8th edition), Prentice Hall.

The first of the above is essential reading. Lectures will follow closely the material in this book.. In addition to the above, students should keep abreast of current European economy issues through newspapers and magazines, particularly the Financial Times and the Economist, and the Web references provided in the Baldwin and Wyplosz book.

Contact Hours/Methods of Teaching and Student Learning

The main mode of teaching is the use of standard lectures, running for 50 minutes twice a week, throughout both semesters. The lectures will be used primarily to stimulate interest in the subject, provide introductions to some of the more difficult material in the core textbook, and to supplement the book where relevant. While the numbers taking the course can exceed 75, questions are welcomed, at least to a limited extent, during lectures.

There are no lecture notes produced for the module, just bullet points to provide a context and focus for students during lectures.

There will also be a class programme (details to be provided later) at which students will be asked to contribute to class discussion. The lecturer will also be readily contactable by email to answer queries in relation to the course and to make face-to-face appointments if required.

Students will be asked to evaluate the course and any overall suggestions for improvement taken on board where possible.

Assessment Details

  • 50 per cent for short test Week 8, MT
  • 50 per cent for essay due Tuesday 19th December (details to follow later)

Module Website

Michaelmas Term: https://www.tcd.ie/Economics/staff/johagan/ec3030/ (you will be redirected from Blackboard to this site)