|SETTORE SCIENTIFICO DISCIPLINARE||SECS-P/02|
The course (8 Cfu) provides the basic concepts and tools of comparative political economy in order to study the functioning of different types of economies and political systems.
The course aims at introducing students to the recent research, both theoretical and empirical, in economics and other social sciences, concerning the political causes of the success, or failure, of the states. In particular, we will focus the attention on the interaction between political and economic institutions and development, emphasizing: how the states’ economic performance depends on their institutions, and the endogenous emergence of the latter as the outcome of an underlying distributive conflict within the society.
The presumption inspiring the course is that institutions (broadly defined) are the key to explain why states follow different development paths.
The main questions addressed by course, and closely related, are:
1. How are political institutions (with a special emphasis on democratic institutions) classified, how do they function, and what political and economic consequences do they have.
2. Why do some nations prosper, whereas other nations fail?
3. Why, in particular, Italian nationhood has been said to be a failure?
Note: We will focus mainly, but not only, on the historical experience of the Western World (e.g. Europe and the US), and pay special attention to the nature of political institutions in place (e.g. absolutist regimes, constitutional monarchies, different forms of democracy), over a relatively long period of time (i.e. beginning with some Ancient Civilizations). The exposition will not necessarily follow a chronological order, but rather a logical one as much as possible.
Knowledge of political economy, economic policy and international economy.
Face to face lessons
Course, PART 1: democracy (happy ending)
Class 1 and 2. Introduction to the class: institutions and the problem of commitment.
* North, Douglas C. and Barry R. Weingast (1989) “Constitutions and Commitment: The Evolution of Institutions Governing Public Choice in Seventeenth-Century England.” The Journal of Economic History, Vol. 44(4), pp. 803-32.
* Acemoglu, Daron and James A. Robinson (2006) Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy, Ch. 2, pp. 15-47; Cambridge UP.
Class 3 and 4. Commitment, fiscal policy, property rights and growth.
* North, Douglass and Robert Paul Thomas (1976) The Rise of the Western World: A New Economic History, Ch. 8, Fiscal Policy and Property Rights, pp. 91-101; Cambridge University Press.
Bean, Richard (1973) “War and the Birth of the Nation State,” The Journal of Economic History, 33(1), pp 203-221.
Pincus, Steven and James A. Robinson (2013) “Wars and State Making Reconsidered: The Rise of the Interventionist State.” Downloadable at: http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/conferences/2013-bgie/Documents/Pincus.pdf.
Hoffann, Philip and Jean-Laurent Rosenthal “Divided We Fall: The Political Economy of Warfare and Taxation.”
Class 5. Politics and science.
CGG part I.
Class 6, 7 and 8. The modern state and democratization.
CGG part II.
Class 8, 9 and 10. Varieties of democracies (general theory).
CGG part III.
Class 10, 11 and 12. Varieties of democracies (patterns of outcomes).
CGG part IV.
* Lijphart, Arend (2012) Patterns of Democracy: Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries, pp. 1- 147; Yale UP.
* Persson, Torsten, and Guido Tabellini (2004) “Constitutions and Economic Policy,” Journal of Economic Perspectives, 18(1): pp. 75-98.
Acemoglu, Daron (2005) “Constitutions, Politics, and Economics: A Review Essay On Persson and Tabellini’s The Economic Effects of Constitutions,” Journal of Economic Literature, 43(4), pp. 1025-1048.
Ticchi, Davide and Andrea Vindigni (2007) “An Economic Theory of Constitutional Choice,” CESifo DICE Report, 5 (3), pp. 12-16.
Sheve, Kenneth and David Stasavage (2009) “Institutions, Partisanship, and Inequality in the Long Run,” World Politics, 61(2), pp. 215-253.
Course, PART 2: why nations fail?
Class 13. The question of why some countries prosper and others do not.
AR, Ch. 1.
Class 14. Wrong answers: geography and culture.
AR, Ch. 2.
Class 15. Institutions, incentives and growth. European colonialism.
AR, Ch. 3 and 9.
Class 16, 17, 18. Politics in time: criticial junctures and the dynamics of institutions; virtuous circles.
AR, Ch. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 12.
Class 19. Why nations fail today.
AR, Ch. 13.
Course, PART 3: the case of Italy
Class 20 and 21. The Original Characteristics.
Andrea Gamberini and Isabella Lazzarini (2014), The Italian Reinassance States, part I, pp. 7-237.
Graziano part I.
Class 22. The Permanencies.
Graziano part II.
Class 23. Identity and Sovereignty.
Graziano part III.
Class 24. What have we learned?
We will read entirely the following books, which will be the main reference of the course, roughly in chronological order.
- William Roberts Clark, Matt Golder, Sona N Golder. Principi di Scienza Politica. McGraw-Hill. Henceforth CGG.
- Daron Acemoglu, James A. Robinson. Why Nations Fail? Profile Books.
- Hencefoth AR.
- Manlio Graziano. The Failure of Italian Nationhood. The Geopolitics of a Troubled Identity. Palgrave Macmillan.
Other readings, mainly articles, are reported in the syllabus. Only starred (“*”) readings are mandatory.
Ricevimento: Dopo lezione.
FABRIZIO GAZZO (Presidente)
ANDREA VINDIGNI (Presidente)
Lessons in the first semester.
The course aims to ascertain the knowledge of the topics covered in class.
Regular consultation of the course aula web is recommended.