cod. 1007854

Academic year 2023/24
1° year of course - First semester
Academic discipline
Economia politica (SECS-P/01)
A scelta dello studente
Type of training activity
Student's choice
56 hours
of face-to-face activities
8 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

Upon successful completion of this course the students are expected to be able to:

- understand and explain the economic rationale of the EU integration process and its main policies;
- apply economic tools to evaluate the impact of EU policies on various stakeholders;
- assess the risks and the opportunities facing European companies within the context of the EU trade policy
- evaluate possible solutions to the most important unresolved problems of the EU.
More in general:
- conduct an empirical research applying the acquired tools to a particular context:
- communicate the results of an empirical research through a ppt presentation or a written report.


Introductory microeconomics and macroeconomics or equivalent

Course unit content

The course focuses on the economic analysis of the current development of the European Union, its main structure and prospects. More particularly, it concentrates on the process of economic integration and its main stages, like the Customs Union and the Single Market, and on the common commercial policy. Special attention will be devoted to the US-China trade war and to its consequences on Europe. At the macro-level it will take into consideration the Monetary Union and the euro, the European Central Bank and its monetary policy, the fiscal policies. Finally, it will discuss the hottest current issues: the debt crisis, austerity policies, the debate about the euro exit, the proposals for reform of the EU and finally the economic impact of the war in Ukraine.

Full programme

1. Europe in the world economy
2. A brief history of European economic integration.
3. Trade policy tools.
4. The theory of economic integration and its main economic stages.
5. The EU Customs Union and the Single European Market.
6. Global Value Chains and supply-chain trade.
7. Value added trade and the place of Europe.
8. The capture of value.
9. The development of the world trade system.
10. EU multilateral, bilateral and unilateral trade policy.
11. The trade war.
12.The stages of the European Monetary Union.
13. The theory of Optimum Currency Areas. Benefits and costs of a common currency.
14. The European Central Bank and its monetary policy.
15. The Maastricht convergence criteria.
16. MEMO - Fiscal policy.
17. Fiscal policies, the Stability and Growth Pact and the Fiscal Compact.
18. The financial crisis.
19. The sovereign debt crisis.
20. The debate about the austerity policies.
21. Costs and benefits of leaving the euro.
22. Which reforms for the EU and the euro?
23. The impact of the war in Ukraine on the European Union and the policy responses.


For the students who wish to deepen their knowledge, the two reference books are:
- The Economics of European Integration, by Richard Baldwin and Charles Wyplosz, McGraw Hill, 7th edition, paperback, 2023.
- Economics of Monetary Union, by Paul De Grauwe, Oxford University Press, 14th edition, paperback, 2022.

- The titles of some compulsory readings and videos will appear at the end of each set of slides.

Teaching methods

Overall teaching provision will consist of presentations-illustrations of contents by the teacher.
Interactive teaching will find a relevant place under the form of: 1) Explanations following questions by the students or prior requests sent via e-mail; 2) Short students’ interventions; 3) structured activities (students’ individual or collective reports, exercises or case-studies).
All the slides will be posted on the Elly platform before each lesson and then discussed with the students’ participation. Case studies and videos on the most relevant issues will be presented and talked over in class. Students are responsible for consulting the dedicated website on a regular basis in order to know in advance the general lines of the subjects and to be able to contribute actively to class discussions. Updates and additional material are posted on the website. While preparing for the lectures students are also encouraged to extend their study beyond required readings to related papers in scientific journals or newspaper articles.
Students are kindly asked to observe the following courtesy rules:
1. Attend classes on time; do not leave before the end of the class without prior explicit instructor’s approval;
2. Prepare assignments according to the deadlines.

Assessment methods and criteria

Students will be evaluated in a continuous way on the basis of their participation to the class discussions and of the fulfilment of the assigned tasks. The final exam is written and based on at least three questions on the content of all the slides, class discussions and compulsory readings and videos. Final grade is based on the final exam (60%) and on students’ class participation (40%). The ‘cum laude’ will be given only in case of exceptional performances in both aspects of the evaluation.
Final grades will be published on the Esse3 platform within two weeks from the date of the final exam.

Other information

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