Postgraduate course

Public Economics

Level of Study


Teaching semester


Objectives and Content

Public economics is a wide topic that in principle includes most aspects of the public sector. It includes topics related to:

  1. Public revenues (taxes).
  2. Public expenses.
  3. Public enterprises.
  4. Public regulations.
  5. Public decision-making processes.
  6. Public policy and the evaluation of public interventions

The course will focus both on theoretical models and empirical studies.

Learning Outcomes

A candidate who has completed his or her qualification should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The candidate

  • understands the normative foundations of public institutions
  • understands the principles behind a sensible tax system, both for individuals and firms
  • is aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the Norwegian tax system.


The candidate can

  • apply the theory to relevant policy issues
  • Explain intuitively the basic theoretical insights of the theory

General competence

The candidate is better at

  • following detailed argumentation
  • discriminating between valid and invalid argumentation

Recommended Previous Knowledge


Access to the Course

Master Programme in Economics, Professional Studies in Economics or equivalent

Teaching and learning methods


Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

One set of compulsory exercises must be handed in at a pre-specified date (pass/fail). Approved compulsory requirements do not have time limits.

Forms of Assessment

4 hours written exam

Examination Support Material

Mathematical Formula Collection of K Sydsæter, A. Strøm and P. Berck or Mathematical Formulas for Economists of B Luderer, V. Nollau and K. Vetters and calculator. The following simple, non-programmable calculators without graphical display are allowed to be used for written tests:

All models of the type:

  • Casio FX-82
  • Hewlett-Packard HP30
  • Texas Instruments TI-30

The Department of Economics can conduct a sample of aids in the examination room.

Assessment Semester

Assessment in teaching semester. New exam the following semester only for students who have a valid document of absence.

Course Evaluation

All the courses at the Department of Economics are evaluated at the end of each semester.


Contact Information


Exam information

  • For written exams, please note that the start time may change from 09:00 to 15:00 or vice versa until 14 days prior to the exam. The exam location will be published 14 days prior to the exam.

  • Type of assessment: Written examination

    20.11.2018, 09:00
    4 hours
    Withdrawal deadline