PP404      Half Unit
Economics for Public Policy

This information is for the 2023/24 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Sandra Sequeira and Prof Richard Davies


This course is compulsory on the Master of Public Policy. This course is not available as an outside option.

Course content

This is graduate level course for mid-career policy-makers to develop their knowledge and understanding of key principles of economics as applicable to policy-making. The emphasis is on developing an understanding of analytical frameworks and models that can be applied to a wide variety of contexts. Both micro- and macro-economics will be covered.


This course is delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars totalling a minimum of 35.5 hours across Winter Term.  

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 10 problem sets in the WT.

There will be weekly formative course work to give students the opportunity to develop fluency with the tools covered in the course.

Indicative reading

  • Mankiw, N. Gregory and Mark Taylor (2017) Economics, 4th Edition, Cengage Learning EMEA.
  • Moss, David A. A Concise Guide to Macroeconomics.
  • Reinventing the Bazaar: A Natural History of Markets - McMillan, John 2002
  • The undercover economist strikes back: how to run or ruin an economy - Tim Harford 2013

The given texts are preparatory reading only. A full reading list will be provided at the start of the course.


Exam (60%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 10 minutes) in the spring exam period.
Memo (30%) and continuous assessment (10%) in the WT.

Student performance results

(2019/20 - 2021/22 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 27.8
Merit 39.7
Pass 26.2
Fail 6.3

Key facts

Department: School of Public Policy

Total students 2022/23: 65

Average class size 2022/23: 13

Controlled access 2022/23: Yes

Lecture capture used 2022/23: Yes (LT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills