Macroeconomics II


Course Objective

After successfully completing this course you can identify strengths and
limitations of academic research on the macroeconomic effects of fiscal

After successfully completing this course you can demonstrate empirical
and theoretical knowledge concerning the macroeconomic effects of fiscal

After successfully completing this course you can provide an analysis of
the macroeconomic consequences of a real-world fiscal policy proposal
based on existing theoretical and empirical academic findings.

After successfully completing this course you can professionally present
your analysis of a real-world fiscal policy proposal to policy makers.

After successfully completing this course you can develop and defend a
position on a real-world fiscal policy proposal based on its social

After successfully completing this course you can describe what you
would like to understand better about the macroeconomic effects of
fiscal policies.

Course Content

In recent years, policy makers in Europe and around the world have been
confronted with decisions about fiscal policy that raise important
questions. Was fiscal austerity necessary or misguided? Is fiscal
stimulus actually effective in recessions? Are current levels of
government debt too high or is this the time for more public investment?
Do tax cuts boost growth? What policy makers believe the answer to these
questions to be will shape macroeconomic policy in the future, and
become especially critical when the next recession strikes.

You will put yourself in the shoes of a policy consultant who has been
asked to advise the European Commission on the current fiscal policy
situation of one of one European country. We will choose the country
based on current developments. In 2018 the course focused on Italy. You
will start by providing advice based on your current knowledge and
understanding of macroeconomics gained in previous courses. You will
reflect on how far this takes you in providing satisfactory advice, and
which issues you need to understand better. You will then dig more
deeply into the existing empirical and theoretical research by
macroeconomists relevant for these issues, reflect on how convincing
this research is, and use the findings from this research to develop
more satisfactory advice.

Teaching Methods

The course uses a combination of a flipped classroom approach with
regular mini-lectures. The idea of the flipped classroom approach is
that instead of first encountering new material in lectures and then
studying it later at home, you have your first encounter with the
material at home and prepare through readings, videos, and exercises. In
the class meeting you will engage in interactive activities (exercises,
discussion etc.) to better understand and apply the material. We will
use this approach when there are good preparation materials available.
In addition, we will also regular use mini-lectures (ca. 15 minutes
each) to fill in gaps in the readings, cover issues for which no
suitable readings are available, and address especially difficult
In addition there will be workgroups, and you will write a policy brief
in a team.

Method of Assessment

Written exams - individual assessment.
Regular assignments - individual assessment.
Policy analysis or brief - group assessment.

Entry Requirements

Quantitative Research Methods I, Microeconomics I, Macroeconomics I


There is no required textbook for this course. We assign readings from
academic journals, think tanks, journals, magazines, newspapers and
blogs. We also provide notes and videos on important theoretical models
and empirical approaches. Since we will be building on what you learned
in Macroeconomics I, it can be useful to have available a copy of the
textbook from that course: N. Gregory Mankiw and Mark P. Taylor,
Macroeconomics (European Edition), 2014, W.H. Freeman and Company
(ISBN-13: 978-1464141775).

Recommended background knowledge

Academic Skills

General Information

Course Code E_EBE2_MACEC
Credits 6 EC
Period P1
Course Level 200
Language of Tuition English
Faculty School of Business and Economics
Course Coordinator dr. B.A. Brugemann
Examiner dr. B.A. Brugemann
Teaching Staff

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Study Group, Lecture
Target audiences

This course is also available as: