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Microeconomics for Public Policy

PPOL 4200

Microeconomics for Public Policy Analysis will provide a comprehensive, case-based overview for the MPP student of the consequences of contemporary public policies for individuals, households, and firms. Public policy is often said to consist of the distribution of scarce or valuable resources or benefits through the mechanisms of the public sector. This course will provide the opportunity to gain fluency and expertise in the application of economic analysis to such problems as transfer payments, entitlements, government subsidies, taxation, housing, education, labor, welfare and crime. Issues concerned with exploring the government's role in encouraging innovation, maintaining a growing economy, and budgeting under conditions of "surplus," will be explored using contemporary policy initiatives. Two competing visions of public policy will be examined: the role of economic policy in securing the benefits of "ordered liberty," which accrues to the individual; and (2) the vision of public policy as fundamental to the correction of anomalies in the market and in the distribution of scarce resources, often based on interest group claims of "disparity" and "inequality".