• Offered by Research School of Economics
  • ANU College ANU College of Business and Economics
  • Course subject Economics
  • Areas of interest Economics
  • Academic career Undergraduate
  • Course convener
    • AsPr Maria Racionero Llorente
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in First Semester 2019
    See Future Offerings

This course is the advanced version of ECON2131 Public Sector Economics  instead of Public Economics - Theory. The course is taught at a more advanced level for undergraduate students enrolled at the Honours level.

The Pass component consists on a standard public economics course, which commonly takes for granted the existence of a benevolent government and focuses mostly on what governments should do (see details for the Pass component in the ECON2131 Programs and Courses page)

The Honours component covers topics on public choice and provides an alternative, more critical, view of government. The public choice perspective places more emphasis on modeling the political process and argues that this, like the market mechanism, has readily identifiable sources of failure.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the requirements for this course, students should be able to:

  • Identify and explain the principal forms of market failure that provide a justification for government intervention;
  • Describe the main policy instruments used to mitigate market failures and explain the principles that guide their optimal use;
  • Explain the limitations of government intervention - for instance, illustrate how the presence of information problems both explains the forms that policy intervention take and imposes limits on what can be achieved by it.
  • Identify the trade-offs captured by public economics models; including the assumptions, relevance, and limitations of those models 
  • Analyse policy problems and assess arguments appearing in the policy debate.
  • Distinguish the normative and the positive approaches to public economics and, in particular, identify and explain public choice models of government

Other Information

See the course outline on the College courses page. Outlines are uploaded as they become available. 

Indicative Assessment

Take-home assignments, a mid-semester examination and an end-of-semester examination. Details to be determined at the commencement of the course.

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


Contact hours as for the pass course together with additional honours classes and assessment.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed or concurrent enrolment in ECON2101/2111 Microeconomics 2 (P or H).


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Band 3
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $4140
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $5460
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings and Dates

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery
2463 25 Feb 2019 04 Mar 2019 31 Mar 2019 31 May 2019 In Person

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions