Transport Economics and Management


Course Objective

The transport sector is very important for the Netherlands and the
Benelux. In a relatively small area, we find the ports of Rotterdam,
Antwerp and Amsterdam. In the same area we have the Amsterdam Airport
Schiphol and Brussels Zaventem as main airports. These important
international nodes are connected to the hinterland (Germany, France) by
an extensive road and rail system and inland waterways. These nodes, and
the access and regress modes provide an important contribution to the
economy. How is the transport sector organized? What are
the strategies, and how do we set prices?
By the end of this course, the student can explain recent developments
in the transport sector using economic theories. This will help you
identify opportunities for your firm or interpret consultancy reports.
The students will demonstrate this by writing a short report and during
the final examination.

Course Content

In this course, we discuss the economic foundations of pricing and
network strategies in transport sectors, and the implications for
transport policy. In the first part of the course we discuss the
microeconomic theory of market structures, pricing, externalities and
regulation, with a strong focus on transport markets. Which market
structures can we use to describe transport sectors? How does this
influence price setting for passenger and freight transport? How do we
deal with environmental effects? We also discuss the costs of operating
transport networks. How can we describe the cost of operating, for
example, a rail network or a shipping company? Using regression analysis
we illustrate how cost functions can be estimated, and used
in policy making.

In the second part of the course several transport markets will be
discussed, applying the theories and techniques discussed in the first
part. We discuss the maritime transport market, road transport, and also
the rail market. In addition, the students will have to do an assignment
using basic econometric techniques.

Teaching Methods

There will be two lectures each week in which the emphasis is on the
teacher's explanation of the essential material. Active participation of
the students is, however, expected in all lectures. The tutorials
focus on empirical applications of some concepts discussed during the
lectures (cost functions, ship size).
Furthermore, during the tutorials we practice with the materials from
the lectures.

Method of Assessment

tutorials 25 percent, written interim examination 75 percent

Entry Requirements

We expect students followed a bachelor course in (micro) economics and


- Mallard & G., S. Glaister, Transport Economics Theory, Application
and Policy. Palgrave Macmillan, New York, 2008.
- Lecture slides will be distributed via Canvas.

Recommended background knowledge

We expect students followed a bachelor course in (micro) economics and
statistics. If you followed these courses no further preparation is
The following book gives an indication of the expected entry level:
'Stuart Cole (2005), Applied Transport Economics: Policy, management
and decision making, Third edition, Kogan Page Ltd'.

General Information

Course Code E_BA_TEM
Credits 6 EC
Period P1
Course Level 400
Language of Tuition English
Faculty School of Business and Economics
Course Coordinator dr. A.J.H. Pels
Examiner dr. A.J.H. Pels
Teaching Staff dr. A.J.H. Pels
dr. V.A.C. van den Berg

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Teaching Methods Seminar, Lecture
Target audiences

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