This course provides a set of tools appropriate for economic analysis. The applications are broad and include all fields of economics. The student learns to:
- Set up and solve the most common decision problems economic agents (consumers, firms) face.
- Identify the main variables that influence the behavior of economic agents.
- Understand the basic concepts of Consumer Theory: preferences, utility functions, marginal rate of substitution, budget set, demand functions, consumer surplus.
- Understand the concepts of uncertainty and risk, attraction and aversion to risk, risk premium, use and value of information.
- Understand the basic concepts of the Theory of the Firm: inputs and outputs, production function, opportunity cost, sunk costs, fixed and variable cost, total, average and marginal cost, short and long run costs, supply function.
- Evaluate the consequences al alternative regulatory policies in competitive and monopolistic markets (price controls, quotas, taxes and subsidies, tariffs).
The course material teaches students how to:
- Frame economic problems by using formal models amenable to quantitative analysis.
- Use standard methods to solve decision problems.
- Apply equilibrium analysis to identify the results of the interactions of economic agents.
The course encourages students to:
- Analyze economic problems without prejudices, and with precision and rigor.
- Reason critically.
- Learn autonomously.
- Argue a viewpoint showing its foundation and appreciating the merits of other opinions.