BAEcon Development Studies

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:Microeconomics 2

Unit code ECON10232 10 Level 1 Semester 2 Yes

Overview

Microeconomics 2 delves deeper into the fundamental model of demand and supply, introduced in (the principles of) Microeconomics 1 course in semester 1. We introduce basic microeconomic models of consumer and producer choice, which we use to derive market outcomes. We discuss how these models apply to actual practice, and how economists use them to describe and predict market outcomes and their relevance to economic policy decisions. Choice is a fundamental element of microeconomic analysis and human behaviour and in this course we develop formal economic models of choice, which we then use to describe, explain, and predict the behaviour of individuals and firms.

Pre/co-requisites

Unit title Unit code Requirement type Description
Introductory Mathematics ECON10061 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Microeconomics 1 ECON10221 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Microeconomics 1 ECON10331 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
(ECON10221 or ECON10331) and (ECON10061 or ECON10071)

(ECON10221 OR ECON10331) AND (ECON10061 OR ECON10071)

Aims

The main aim of this course is to introduce students to the study of individual choice and supply decisions, under two different market structures - pure competition, and monopoly.  We build on knowledge from (the principles of) Microeconomics 1 course in semester 1, but we employ more formal mathematical (calculus) techniques learned in either ECON10061 or ECON10071. We also introduce Game Theory as a tool for analysing strategic interactions between economic agents. The application of these basic models to actual practice and economic policy, is discussed throughout the course, and we highlight both their usefulness as well as limitations in that context.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course you will be able to:

• Model individual choice i.e., solve utility maximisation problems under budgetary constraints.
• Derive individual and market demand schedules.
• Use the consumer choice model to describe actual practice, and how it can be used to analyse choice between actual commodities.
• Understand the applications and limitations of the consumer choice model.
• Understand and model supply decisions of individual firms under pure competition and monopolistic market conditions and understand the application and limitations of the pure (perfect) competition and monopolistic market models.
• Identify when markets can be described as perfectly competitive or monopolistic, and when they cannot, and explain the output and pricing decisions of  firms operating in such markets.
• Understand how Game Theoretic approaches can be used in the study of strategic interactions between market agents.
• Identify when firms’ decisions are strategic in actual practice, and how inter-dependence affects their decisions.

Syllabus

Introduction to Consumer’s Choice

• Preferences & Utility
• Budget Constraints & Choice
• Demand & The Slutsky Equation

Introduction to Producer’s Choice

• Technology & Profit Maximisation
• Cost Minimisation & Costs

Introduction to market structures: Pure (Perfect) Competition

• Firm & Industry Supply

Introduction to market structures: Monopoly

• Pricing decision of a monopolist

Introduction to Game Theory

• Pure & Mixed Strategies
• Nash Equilibrium
• Best response functions

Teaching and learning methods

Synchronous activities (such as Lectures or Review and Q&A sessions, and tutorials), and guided self-study

Employability skills

Group/team working
• Team working skills, through the interaction with fellow students in preparing and delivering the group presentation.
Oral communication
• Communication skills, through regular interaction with students and staff, participation and engagement in classes, and delivery of the group presentation.
Problem solving
• Problem solving skills, through the methodical and structured approach to solving mathematical problems and expressing theoretical concepts in mathematical terms.
Other
• Social responsibility, through participation and active engagement in classes, and while working with fellow students as a group.

Assessment methods

• Online midterm test (25%),
• Group presentation (25%)
• Final examination (50%)