Module Identifier EC31410  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Mr Dennis A Thomas  
Semester Semester 1  
Pre-Requisite EC36420  
Course delivery Lecture   10 Hours  
  Seminars / Tutorials   4 Hours  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam1.5 Hours  100%
Supplementary Exam1.5 Hours  100%

Learning outcomes

On completing this module students will have gained an understanding of the following topics:

? the role of markets and firms as alternative coordinating mechanisms
? transaction cost economics
? the determination of firm boundaries with respect to diversified and vertically integrated activities
? principal-agent theory and incentive contracts
? alternative explanations of firm motivation and behaviour


This third year module investigates economic explanations of the nature of firms, their organisational form and the scope of their activities. It employs transaction cost economizing to explain the circumstances in which the firm is superior to other forms of organisation, and extends the analysis to examine firm growth and development and the determination of firm boundaries. The module also examines the internal organisation and motivation of firms, with particular regard to decision-making and the control problems that may occur within firms.

Reading Lists

D Besanko, D Dranove and M Shanley (2000) Economics of Strategy 2nd edition. Wiley
S Douma and H Schreuder (1998) Economic Approaches to Organisations 2nd. Prentice Hall
P Milgrom and J Roberts (1992) Economics, Organisation and Management Prentice Hall International


This module is at CQFW Level 6