Economics 102 – Microeconomics (1st Sem AY 2016-2017)

Professor: Dr. E. F. Esguerra

Course description: Consumer and producer theories, price determination under different market structures, economic efficiency and welfare, market failure

Course objectives: The objective of this course is to provide students with a basic understanding of microeconomic concepts and their applications. At the end of this course, students are expected to have gained some knowledge in the use of economic principles to analyze a broad range of social phenomena.

 Basic reference

Varian, H. R. (2014). Intermediate Microeconomics with Calculus. New York and London: W.W. Norton & Company (Previous editions back to 2010 will do; take note though that chapter assignments indicated here follow the numbering of the 2014 edition.) [Print only]

Recommended supplementary readings (Chapters can be read in any particular order that suits you.)

Harford, T. (2008). The Logic of Life: The Rational Economics of an Irrational World. New York: Random House. [Print only]

Levitt, S. and S. Dubner. (2005). Freakonomics. New York: Harper-Collins. [Print only]

Oyer, P. (2014). Everything I Ever Needed to Know About Economics I Learned from Online Dating. Boston: Harvard Business Review Press.  [Not available]



(On the uses of microeconomic analysis; the scope and method of economics)

Varian, Ch. 1

Becker, G. 1993. “Nobel Lecture: The Economic Way of Looking at Behavior”. Journal of Political Economy 101(3): 385-409. link [Open Access] link [Accessible via UPSE network only]

Choice and demand

(Preferences and utility, utility maximization and consumer choice, income and substitution effects, labor supply, intertemporal choice, uncertainty, market demand)

Varian, 2-10, 12, 14-15

Production and supply

(Production functions, costs, profit maximization and firm supply)

Varian, Chs. 19-24

Perfect competition and welfare

(Perfect competition, efficiency, welfare)

Varian, Chs. 16, 32-34

Imperfect competition and strategic interaction

(Monopoly, imperfect competition, game theory)

Varian, Chs. 25-30

Market failure and asymmetric information

(Externalities, public goods, network effects, quality choice, screening, signaling)

Varian, Ch. 35-38

Stiglitz, J. 1987. “The Causes and Consequences of the Dependence of Quality on Price”. Journal of Economic Literature. March: 1-48.  link [Accessible via UPSE network] 

Stiglitz, J. 1985. “Information and Economic Analysis: A Perspective.” Economic Journal. Supplement to Volume 95: 21-41.  link [Open access] link [Accessible via UPSE network]

Additional topics (as time allows)

(Behavioral economics)

Varian, Ch. 30