Upon completion of this course, the student is able to: please check info under activities
Order of enrolment:
The following courses should be
*successfully completed: /
*taken before: 'Markten en prijzen' en 'De globale economie'*at least taken at the same time: /
Please check info under 'activities'
Articles and literature
Slides, transparencies, courseware
Toledo / e-platform
Is also included in other courses
- Bachelor of Economics (Abridged Programme) 120 ects.
- Bachelor of Economics 180 ects.
- Bachelor of Business Economics 180 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Biosystems Engineering 120 ects.
- Master of Economic Policy 60 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Food Science and Technology 120 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Catalytic Science and Technology 120 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Agricultural Sciences 120 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Land and Forest Management 120 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Biomolecular Engineering 120 ects.
- Bachelor of Political and Social Sciences (Major Subject: Political Sciences) 180 ects.
- Bachelor of Philosophy (Option: Economics) 180 ects.
- Bachelor of Language and Area Studies: Arabic and Islamic Studies (Minor in Economics) 180 ects.
- Bachelor of Language and Area Studies: Sinology (Minor in Economics) 180 ects.
- Bachelor of Language and Area Studies: Japanology (Minor in Economics) 180 ects.
- Master of Bioscience Engineering: Environmental Technology 120 ects.
- Bachelor in Business Economics (new students 2012-2013 and students 2011-2012) 180 ects.
Part 1: state of affairs concerning public finances in Belgium and Europe (for Belgium based on the report High Counsel of Finances and latest Stabilisation programme handed in with Europe). We analyse the dynamics of building of debt via a.o. interest snowball, we deduce conditions for tenable governmental finances from it and discuss the intertemporal budget limitation of the government. We put the link with Macro-economical stabilisation policy. (R&G chapter 20)
Part 2: The welfare-economical context: Objective with this is to clarify the trade-off between efficiency and distribution, from economic modelling of the behaviour of the main actors and their interaction, to later apply this frame on the various instruments of governmental expenses and receipts.
o R&G chapter 3: introduction of a simple general equilibrum-model in which we can define and characterise efficiency (using the first welfare theorem).
o R&G chapters 4 and 5: we discuss market failures, public goods and externalities as deviations of the first best conditions.
o R&G chapter 6: we discuss how, in a representative democracy, decisions are made, go through the features of these and alternative decision procedures, and use these insights to explain the and evaluate the dimensions of the government sector.
o R&G chapter 12: we discuss the conceptual frame to analyse the re-dividing role of the government (inequality avers social welfare functions, criteria of redistribution).
Part 3: Institutional aspects of the budget:
o based on three documents (General Clarification, Public Means Budget and the General Expenses Budget) we go through the budget cycle and make up and the most important budget-technical terms.
o we discuss the Special Financing Law that organizes how the Communities and Regions within the Belgian Federation obtain means to finance their expenses. We frame these discussions in the theory of the Budget federalism (R&G chapter 20).
Part 4: Taxes:
o we start with an empirical description of the various kinds of taxes in Belgium, with attention to the fundament, the tariffs and the elasticity of the receipts.
o R&G chapter 14: we discuss incidentiality and transfering of various taxes.
o R&G chapter 15-16: we deduce funadamentals of taxation from the welfare theoretical context by defining the term excess burden and introduce it as criterion for the efficiency loss of distortive taxes. We make a start with the normative analysis of taxes ('optimal indirect and direct taxes') to make the trade-off between efficiency and justice more concrete.
Part 5: Expenses: we start from a description of the empirical facts about the evolution of the government expenses and seek an explanation in complementary theaoretical approaches. We discuss the specific challenges linked with the ageaing issue and the way in which the pension system works right now and might be reformed (R&G chapter 11)
Other topics: ex ante and ex post analysises of policy changes with empirical application on recent reformations in Belgium and Flanders.
In finishing this course, the student is able to:
*clarify in a balanced and well-founded way the role of the government in a market economy, from market failures and social choices, with a summarized knowledge of the welfare-economical context;
*clearly describe terms such as taxes, public expenses, inequality and distribution, governmental deficit and public debt, fiscal federalism, social security and social choices;
*put links between these terms based on economic models in which the behaviour of various economic agents (families, companies ànd government) is explicitly taken into account;
*give a realistic view, based on modelling of the behaviour of the government, on the way in which the government functions in reality and what the implications are for the economical policy;
*Assess independently with enough factual knowledge of the governmental finances in Belium within the Belgian and European policy context, current problems of the public finances.
* handbookRosen and Gayer (Mc Graw Hill, 9de editie 2010)* extra course documents are distributed via Toledo
Determination of grades
* The grades are determined by the course lecturer(s), as announced via Toledo and the examination schedule. The result is computed and expressed as a whole number on a scale of 20.
Evaluation third examination period
* During an academic year, the student has 2 chances to participate to the exam: a first time during the first or second examination period, according to the scheduling of the course, and a second time during the third examination period.
* The characteristics of the evaluation of the third examination period are similar to those of the first or the second examination period.
Exam characteristics:*The exam consists of multiple choice questions. There is a correction for guessing in answering the multiple choice questions.