Contents of the course
This part of the course develops the economic tools that exist to analysis urban and territorial systems. In the course, the following questions are tackled: which are the determinants of location choices of firms and individuals? Which are the determinants of economic growth in different types of territories? Which tools exist for the economic analysis of the territory?
The aim is to present the main economic logics that explain the way in which economic activities are organized in space. To achieve such an aim, the course presents the main location theories and regional growth and local development theories that have been developed since the 1950s.
A particular attention is given to urban rent. The course explains the genesis of urban rent, and its determinants.
The course is organized around three parts:
Part 1: Location theory
In this part of the course, the main aim is to explain the location choices of firms and individuals, from an economic perspective. To this aim, the course deals with:
- location theories based on agglomeration economies vs. transportation costs;
- location theories based on accessibility;
- the formation and organization of urban systems;
- urban rent: differential vs. absolute rent.
Part 2: Regional growth and local development theories
In this part of the course, the main theories explaining regional growth are presented, namely:
- growth and industrial specialization;
- keynesian theories of regional growth;
- neoclassical theories of regional growth;
- local development theories.
Part 3: Economic indicators of structure and performance of local area
In the course, the aim is also to present to students the main economic tools to analyze a local area. Practical lectures will allow students to learn how indicators of this kind are built. In particular, the following indicators will be presented:
- indicators of industrial specialization;
- indicators of economic performance;
- indicators of comparative advantages.
The exam is organized in two parts: a written exam and a practical work on the application of the indicators to a specific area.