In this course we will go through the main lessons learnt from the last 15 years of research, which have witnessed an explosion of empirical and theoretical work on institutions that revolutionized several fields of economics. The course will be based primarily on the critical review of empirical work guided by simple economic theory. The journey will start with a macro perspective: economic outcomes are influenced by economic institutions, which are determined by political institutions. But what are good political institutions, and why some countries have them, while others do not? We will answer this question in three steps. First, we will consider political institutions as «democracy» or «autocracy». This simplification, while apparently extreme, provides us with an insightful model of democratization that we can test using micro-data from the UK. Second, we will consider how States originate, why they emerge earlier in some areas than in others, and whether/when they originate as benevolent as opposed to predatory entities. Third, we will consider how political institutions work in divided societies. This will let us differentiate non-democratic societies and provide us with some insight on why some are more economically successful than others. Fourth, we will discuss how States consolidate, which is related to the State expansion in fiscal and legal capacity as well to nation building policies. Here culture plays a big role, so we will spend some time defining culture and discussing how it evolves. We will then review the evidence on how culture shapes the State, and how the States shapes political preferences through nation building policies. We will then take a closer look at State actors. While you may be familiar with politicians (i.e., elected civil servants), you might know less about bureaucrats (i.e., non-elected civil servants). Do they matter? If so, how are they selected? What kind of incentives do they have once in office? Finally, we will consider State repression as well as open conflict, i.e., the breakdown of the State. What determines the onset of conflict? What determines its intensity? Why do people participate in conflict, since none of them can individually expect to influence the outcome? What happens after the conflict is finished? Here the challenge is to re-integrate ex combatants in the society and to heal the relationship between the two sides that did violence on each other. The course can of course be expanded in several directions, so during the first two weeks I will gather student preferences for additional topics (in case we have time for that).
Преподаватель: Michele Valsecchi
Период чтения курса: 31 октября – 25 декабря 2022
Количество аудиторных часов: 42 часа
Количество мест для студентов Новой лиги: 5
Формат чтения курса: оффлайн
Входные требования к студентам: хорошее базовое знание экономики
Рабочий язык дисциплины: английский язык