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EC231: Industrial Economics 1: Strategic Behaviour

  • Jonathan Cave

    Module Leader
  • Minh Tung Le

    Module Lecturer
15 CATS - Department of Economics
Spring Module

Principal Aims

This module focuses on strategic behaviour underlying the various reasons why there is a range of prices even for homogeneous goods, something not treated in traditional models. Thus for example, consumers’ search behaviour, or lack of search, can influence how much they pay, as we see from energy markets, also access to information and firms’ manipulation of information. Once we move beyond homogeneous goods, additional factors come into play, such as price discrimination/ differentiation, for example penalties for consumers who are loyal, and then there are non-price features, differing links between sellers and their suppliers, amongst other things. The approach involves a mixture of models and empirical illustrations and focuses on students’ ability to understand real-world phenomena.

Principal Learning Outcomes

Subject Knowledge and Understanding: By the end of the module students will be able to understand the possibilities of and constraints in pricing differently to different groups of consumers, including those with differential knowledge of prices. The teaching and learning methods that enable students to achieve this learning outcome are: Lectures and seminars, including formative problem sets covered in seminars The summative assessment methods that measure the achievement of this learning outcome are: Assessed problem set and examination

Subject Knowledge and Understanding: By the end of the module students will be able to understand the extent to which models in the above areas receive support from empirical studies The teaching and learning methods that enable students to achieve this learning outcome are: Lectures and seminars The summative assessment methods that measure the achievement of this learning outcome are: Assessed essay

Cognitive Skills: By the end of the module students will be able to have an appreciation of how to structure an argument and analysis The teaching and learning methods that enable students to achieve this learning outcome are: The summative assessment methods that measure the achievement of this learning outcome are: Assessed essay

Key Skills: By the end of the module students will be able to work in groups to achieve a desired outcome. The teaching and learning methods that enable students to achieve this learning outcome are: Formative and summative problem sets worked on in small groups,

Subject Knowledge and Understanding: By the end of the module students will be able to understand reasons for and constraints on vertical relationships between activities; The teaching and learning methods that enable students to achieve this learning outcome are: Lectures and seminars, including formative problem sets covered in seminars The summative assessment methods that measure the achievement of this learning outcome are: Assessed problem set and examination

Syllabus

The module will typically cover the following topics:

Models of search and of switching behaviour and their implications; advertising, quality disclosure and acquisition. Price discrimination between consumers, including self-selection of tariffs; bundling of products, models of revenue management; auction mechanisms for selling goods and services. Vertical integration, vertical restraints and franchising; vertical linkages in electricity.

Context

Core Module
L116 - Year 2, L117 - Year 2
Optional Module
L100 - Year 2, L1P5 - Year 1, L1PA - Year 1, LM1D (LLD2) - Year 2, V7ML - Year 2, V7ML - Year 3, V7MP - Year 2, V7MP - Year 3, V7MR - Year 2, V7MR - Year 3, V7MM - Year 4, LA99 - Year 3, R9L1 - Year 4, R3L4 - Year 4, R4L1 - Year 4, R2L4 - Year 4, R1L4 - Year 4, L1L8 - Year 2, L1L8 - Year 3
Pre or Co-requisites
All of: EC208-15 Industrial Economics 1: Market Structure EC208 for all students except L100
Part-year Availability for Visiting Students
Available in the Spring term only (1 x problem set and 1 x 1200 word essay – 12 CATS) and in the Spring and Summer terms together (1 x problem set and 1 x 1200 word essay and 1 x 2 hour exam – 15 CATS)

Assessment

Assessment Method
Coursework (20%) + 2 hour examination (summer) (80%)
Coursework Details
Coursework (10%), Problem Set (5%), Test (online) (5%), 2 hour examination (summer) (80%)
Exam Timing
N/A

Exam Rubric

Time Allowed: 2 Hours

Read all instructions carefully- and read through the entire paper at least once before you start entering your answers.

There are TWO Sections in this paper. Answer TWO questions in Section A (60 marks in total) and ONE question in Section B 40 marks).

Approved pocket calculators are allowed.

You should not submit answers to more than the required number of questions. If you do, we will mark the questions in the order that they appear, up to the required number of questions in each section.

Previous exam papers can be found in the University’s past papers archive. Please note that previous exam papers may not have operated under the same exam rubric or assessment weightings as those for the current academic year. The content of past papers may also be different.

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