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Urban Economics syllabus PubPol 432

Urban Economics syllabus PubPol 432 - Urban Economics and...

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Urban Economics and Policy PubPol 432 Spring Semester, 2010. Instructor: Douglas J. Krupka (734) 998-6627 [email protected] Office Hours: directly after class, or by appointment. Class Info: Meeting time: T-Th 10:00-11:30. Classroom: Weill 1110. Required Text: Urban Economics , O’Sullivan, 6 th edition or later. Alternant Texts: 5 th or 4 th edition. Suggested additional books: Urban Economics , Mills and Hamilton, 5 th edition. The Death and Life of Great American Cities , Jane Jacobs Cities and the Wealth of Nations , Jane Jacobs Description: With the exception of language and possibly fire, the city has proven to be the most persistently useful and important of man’s inventions. Where cities have flourished, civilization has advanced; where they have perished or failed to develop, it has vanished. This class will introduce students to the city as an object of economic inquiry. We discuss the history and function of the city. We then use economic tools to understand the city’s structure and the implications of this structure on several areas of policy importance, including inequality and poverty, pollution and the environment, transportation and congestion, the housing market. Finally, we look at the city as one unit in a metropolitan system including many cities. Will cities converge towards similar levels of prosperity? The answer to this question is not yet known, but we will lay out the framework by which students can understand the issues relating to regional convergence. The class will use economic methods: that means some math and graphs, although lectures will strive to explain topics clearly in terms of intuition. It will be assumed throughout that students understand basic micro-economics, and are comfortable enough with numbers to perform simple algebraic manipulations of equations, and interpret those equations with graphs. Course Requirements/grading. There are three components to each student’s grade: homework, tests and a group project.
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Homework : Approximately every other week, homework will be assigned to be handed in the following week. These assignments will be a mix of short answer, graphical and essay/memo type questions. Each question on each homework will be graded on a check -/+ scale. A grade of check plus means the answer to the question is more or less correct, and will be assigned 10 points. A grade of a check means that the answer was respectable, but fell short of being fully satisfactory, and will be assigned 8 points.
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