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Introductory Economics - ENV00009C

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  • Department: Environment and Geography
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Julia Touza-Montero
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: C
  • Academic year of delivery: 2017-18

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Autumn Term 2017-18 to Summer Term 2017-18

Module aims

In this module students become familiar with the way of thinking of economists, through an understanding of the approach and scope of both microeconomics, macroeconomics, and economics of the public sector. The course is divided into four blocks: Block I is an introduction to the basic concepts in economics, Block II is devoted to the understanding of consumers and producers behaviours in a competitive market context, Block III introduces students to other market structures beyond perfect competition, Block IV focuses on market failures and their implications for the role of government in the economy, and finally Block IV focuses on issues related to economic growth and sustainability. This module uses applications and case studies from a variety of economic approaches to introduce fundamental concepts of economics of relevance to the management of environment and natural resources. You should find that the skills, which you develop through this module, would provide you with a real advantage in your environmental economics and management studies in subsequent years and also in the job market and your own enterprises. The material of this module is delivered through lectures, small-group tutorials, and seminars.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module, successful students will be able to do the following:

  1. Understand the behaviour of economic agents involved in the economy and relations between them.
  2. Apply theoretical representations of how the economy works.
  3. Understand the economic framework governing business activities.
  4. Apply supply-demand analysis to evaluate the welfare effects of government interventions (e.g. price controls, taxes) on consumers and producers.
  5. Understand the conditions that an economy must satisfy if it is to produce and distribute goods efficiently, and the key reasons markets fail to work efficiently.
  6. Appreciate the problem of market failure to natural resources and the environment.
  7. Identify the economic insights behind environmental management problems and the use of market-based incentives for their resolution.
  8. Evaluate welfare impacts behind the different policies for managing the environment.
  9. Apply the concepts of economic externalities and public goods.
  10. Apply economic theory to real world environmental issues.
  11. Analyse the behaviour of producers and consumers that impact on the environment.
  12. Assess income inequality in the society.
  13. Describe and evaluate the economic performance of nations and regions.
  14. Understand the relationships among economic growth, human welfare and the environment.

Generic / Employability Skills:

  • Identify the essential features of an economic problem, and apply this in an environmental management context.
  • Evaluate economics insights of environmental degradation issues.
  • Address public policy issues using the language and approach of economics.
  • Articulate economic reasoning, and communicate this to others orally and in writing.
  • Use and analysis of numerical economic information.


Task Length % of module mark
Essay 1
N/A 50
University - closed examination
Introductory Economics
1.5 hours 50

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Reassessment Essay
N/A 100

Module feedback

Generic feedback on the progress of the students and discussion on problems and exercises will be provided during small-group tutorials. Students will be able to seek advice on good practices and improvement actions by visiting the offered office hours.

Indicative reading

Mankiw G. and Taylor M. (2008) Principles of Economics (2º ed.) South-Western College Pub

Sloman J. and Wride A. (2009) Economics (7th ed.) Prentice Hall (electronic version available from Library website)

Parking et al. (2014) Economics Pearson Education Limited

Pindyck R. S. and Rubinfeld D. L. (2009) Microeconomics (4º ed.) Prentice-Hall

Berck P. and Helfand G. (2011) The Economics of the Environment, Pearson Addison-Wesley. (many examples and cases studies, broad coverage, easily accessible)

Additional text:

Krugman P. and Well R. (2012) Microeconomics (3rd ed.) Worth

Hussen A. (2000) Principles of Environmental Economics, 2nd Edition, Routledge

(Appendix A of Hussen provides a concise summary of key elements of microeconomics that could be helpful)

Blanchard O. et al. (2010) Macroeconomics (2nd ed.) Pearson

Connolly S. and Munro A. (1999) Economics of the Public Sector, Prentice Hall

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.