Course Description: An examination of the dimensions, causes and consequences of the international flows of goods and services (trade), people (migration), and financial capital.
Section Description: Students will investigate key economic aspects of globalization: trade, migration and finance. We begin by surveying the size, direction and composition of international trade flows. We will consider the economic basis for such flows, and discuss which individuals likely gain or lose (on net) from trade. We will also study major international trade agreements, including the World Trade Organization, the North American Free Trade Agreement, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Next we study the flows of legal and illegal migration around the world, with a special focus on flows to the United States. We will analyze the causes of migration to the U.S., and its consequences for native-born U.S. workers. Our study of international finance will begin with a detailed examination of the balance of payments, which is the account of all of the international transactions of a country’s citizens, businesses, and governments. The balance of payments concept is crucial to explain a country’s exchange rate, trade balance, and international debt, each of which feature prominently in the media and in political debates. We carefully study each. We conclude the course with a brief overview of the economics of international environmental challenges, especially climate change. Course Goals/Objectives: 1. Understand the volume and composition of global trade flows, currently and historically. Understand the patterns of U.S. trade in particular. 2. Understand the concept of comparative advantage, its usefulness and limitations in explaining the pattern of trade. 3. Be able to form a coherent, well-reasoned argument about the advantages and disadvantages of trade for particular sectors, groups, and the economy as a whole. Be able to do the same about specific trade agreements. 4. Understand the volume of migration to the U.S., by country of origin and skill/education level, currently, historically, and cumulatively. 5. Evaluate the importance of economic considerations in the decision to migrate, relatively to other considerations such as family, or war. 6. Understand the state of the debate about how legal and illegal migration to the US has affected the wages and employment status of US-born workers, and the broader economy. 7. Understand the balance of payments, and be able to read balance of payments data as published by the US Bureau of Economic Analysis. 8. Understand that the trade balance and international financial flows are intimately related, and that attempts to eliminate the trade deficit through trade policy may have unintended, negative consequences. 9. Understand that level of the US international debt, its relationship to the trade deficit, and the risks associated with it. 10. Understand the possible relationship between international financial flows and the financial crisis of 2008-2009. 11. Understand how exchange rates are determined, what monetary policy is, and how it may influence financial flows and exchange rates. 12. Understand the logic behind the creation of the Euro, and the sources of the Eurozone crisis. 13. Understand the concept of “externalities,” how it applies to the problem of greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. 14. Be able to form a clear, well-reasoned argument about the difficulties surrounding international cooperation to address the problem of climate change. 15. To exhibit knowledge of the main data sources for international trade, finance and migration, and to be able to differentiate these sources from those that are less reliable.
|TR||11:40 - 12:55||OLD MILL 221|
Instructor(s): Richard A Sicotte
Meeting Dates: 29 Aug 2016 - 09 Dec 2016