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2012/2013  KAN-CM_E103  Economic Theory and Economic & Corporate Development

English Title
Economic Theory and Economic & Corporate Development

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Course period Autumn
Changes in course schedule may occur
Monday 14.25-17.00, week 36-41, 43-46
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Max. participants 60
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Alfred Reckendrees - Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy
This course will be taught together with Battista Severgnini, Econ Department
Administrative contact: Karina Ravn Nielsen - electives.lpf@cbs.dk or direct phone: 38153782
Main Category of the Course
  • Philosophy and philosophy of science
  • International Political Economy
  • Organization
  • Economics, macro economics and managerial economics
Last updated on 08-06-2012
Learning objectives
  • Students improve their capability to analyze economic ideas and concepts, which is a standard qualification for all who work in the field of economics, and for those who have to deal with reports, economic expert reports etc.
  • They learn to identify and to analyze the impact of economic development and crises, or changing institutional arrangements on economic thinking and expand their knowledge and understanding of the social foundations of economic theories.
  • They create knowledge on how to cope with complex theories, and their implications for economic, political and corporate decision making.
  • They learn about the implications of economic theory on practical corporate problems.
  • Students will evaluate the impact of theory and economic development on corporate decision making and strategy, and learn how companies (can) make use of the theoretical concepts.
  • In order to achieve the grade 12 (7 point scale) the student must: develop a well defined and coherent research question in regard to the course topic, identify relevant literature that allows for an answer to the research question, prove evidence of a comprehensive knowledge of the literature and the theories,
  • The research question has to be analyzed and answered in a comprehensible, precise and logic manner and the paper has to meet the formal standards of academic writing.
The course requires a basic knowledge of micro and macro economics.
Home written assignment :
Type of test Home Assignment
Marking scale 7-step scale
Second examiner No second examiner
Exam period December/January and February, Project/home written assignment, 15 pages
Hand in date for the home written assignment: 8.1.2013
15 standard pages for individual papers,
20 or 25 standard pages for group papers.
Aids Open Book, Written and Electronic Aid is permitted
Duration Please, see the detailed regulations below
The topic of the paper must be approved by the course teacher.
Course content
Economic theory, economic ideas, and business practices change over time. Today they are more sophisticated than ever before. However, in spite of more than 200 years of economic reasoning, there seems to be only limited progress in regard to some relevant economic problems. Financial crises and depressions are often still regarded unique events different from previous ones; poverty is difficult to eradicate; and what is the purpose of the company and ist role in society? Questions like this are not only related to political, but also to economic theories and paradigms.
The aims of this course are to analyse how economic ideas and theories evolved and how they changed the world, respectively how the changing world shaped new economic ideas. In this process the company, and its economic analysis, is specifically important and the course will be centered on this issue. The study of economic development and of the evolution of economic theory will provide a better comprehension of present economic and business problems to the economist inside and outside of a company.
The underlying assumption of the course is that economics is cumulative progressing, it is rather exposed to conflicting social and economic ideas that try to make sense of technological change, economic challenges and crises. One of the most striking examples of the relationship between economic development and the evolution of economic theory is the Industrial Revolution that helped to develop Adam Smith’s ideas into a coherent Classical Political Economy reflecting the economic developments of the time, and that allowed Karl Marx to elaborate a competing explanation based on social conflict. A second example is the Great Depression of the 1930s that challenged the then dominant Neoclassical Orthodoxy. Facing the problems of economic crisis, economists became e.g. more interested than ever before in the role of demand, employment, and liquidity; but also in the role of the firms. The last few decades with globalization, increasing ecological problems, and the recent economic crisis might result in similar changes: Today many conceptual frameworks and economic ideas are competing. There is e.g. a lively debate about the theory of the firm, entrepreneurship and innovation. Macro economic theory celebrates its survival not least because of the recent financial crisis. Formerly neglected heterodox economists like Hyman P. Minsky are rediscovered, and banks and companies are (hopefully) discussing what went wrong, and why?
In this course students will learn to analyse economic theory in the context of economic and social development. It will introduce to main concepts of economic thought based on primary texts of great and well known, and also less famous economists. The basic idea is to discuss the interdependence between changing economic ideas and a changing economy and business environment. Today, corporate CEOs and CFOs are criticized for high bonuses, the banking business is accused for toxic products and politicians for wasting taxpayers money; and the economists are blamed for not having forecasted the crisis. Reflections on Economic Theory and Economic & Corporate Development seem to be necessary.
Teaching methods
The course will be taught in 15 weeks (2hours each). The course is based on lectures combined with classroom discussions that will partly be based on students’ presentations and group discussions. Preparatory reading of approx. 700 pages. is required.
Student workload
Lectures 30 hours
Lecture preparation 75 hours
Students presentations (group work) 20 hours
Home written assignment 95 hours
diverse, organizational work 5 hours
Expected literature
Tentative literature:
The course requires intensive reading in order to prepare the classes (approx. 60pages. for each class) and perhaps additional reading beyond the syllabus in order to write the project. - A compulsory syllabus with original texts of economic theory will be provided until August 15th, 2012.
1. Louis Puttermann/Randal S. Krozsner, ed. (1996), The Economic Nature of the Firm. A Reader. Second Edition, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
2. Ernesto Screpanti / Stefano Zamigani (2005), An Outline of the History of Economic Thought. Second Edition Revised and Expanded, Oxford: Oxford University Press
3. Karl-Gunnar Persson (2010), An Economic History of Europe: Knowledge, Institutions and Growth, 600 to the Present,Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Articles / Book chapters (available by a course compendium, if not accessible online)
This will be a collection of primary texts from the 18th to the 21st century that will focus on turning points in economic theory with a specific emphasis on the company (entrepreneurship, management, corporate governance).
The final composition will be made if the study board accepts this proposal for an elective.
Last updated on 08-06-2012