Economics of Regulation in Science-Based Domains

Teacher: Nicola Matteucci

Content: The course presents normative and positive (from latin positum) topics of the economics of regulation and public policy, with a focus on science-based (high tech) economic sectors, and on big societal challenges whose solution relies on scientific knowledge. Policy-making is meant in its widest definition, spanning from detailed sectoral norms and policy (e.g., health policy and regulation) to broader policy-making (e.g., development or environment policy). The course revolves around the two fundamental categories of “market” and “government failures”, to present a reasoned (non-systematic) review of influential works analysing the causes, mechanisms and consequences of policy failure and/or capture. The main steppingstone of the course is scientific lobbyism.

Main topics:

  • Market failures in science-based industries: types and causes
  • Market failures in common property resources and public goods: types and causes
  • Mechanisms of public (government) intervention
  • Private agendas, conflicts of interests (COI), and channels of influence
  • From regulatory capture to the regulatory State
  • Old and new regulatory paradigms in multi-level governance
  • Scientific lobbyism as emerging influence paradigm