INAF-480 German Economy 21st Century
Spring for 2017-2018
The recent financial and economic crisis has reinvigorated the debate about economic models. In this course, we will take a close look at the structure and performance of the German economy in a comparative framework, with a particular focus on current challenges, reform options and policy debates. We begin with a look backward, exploring several key historical events and experiences that continue to shape current institutions and debates. We next explore the present-day German economy from a variety of perspectives, including core sectors – cars, energy, finance -, regional differences and the importance of mid-sized firms. Drawing on this background, we then turn to two macro challenges, globalization and growth. We begin by exploring how the historically very open German economy has been affected by and has responded to the globalization process. We then turn to the growth challenge, inquiring into the reasons for the growth slowdown and its recent re-acceleration as well as into the factors – including the education system - that will determine the growth potential going forward. The last part of the course explores three linked areas at the core of recent economic debates. We begin with the long-term fiscal challenge and the policy responses taken. We then turn to labor market reforms and their impact. We conclude with a closer look at the future of the social insurance systems against the background of fiscal reform, labor market developments and the ongoing demographic transition. In the final class, we take a step back to consider the broader issue of comparative economic models.
Credits: 3
Prerequisites: None
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