Economics of the Labour Market - EC545

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2018-19 2019-20
(version 3)
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6 15 (7.5) DR ASJ Gosling
(version 3)
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6 15 (7.5)


EC500 Microeconomics, EC502 Macroeconomics





This is a one unit module offered by the School of Economics in the Autumn Term to final year students who have completed at least Stage II level or equivalent modules in macroeconomics and microeconomics.

The market for labour is the crucial mechanism that determines the distribution of income, work and opportunities. Macro factors such as globalisation, (im)migration, technological change and government policy will affect and be affected by the structure of labour markets. Rather than trying to cover the entirety of this very broad subject, the aim of this course is to focus on a few areas of topical interest and importance. We will examine the issues like the following:

1. The relationship between unemployment and wages
2. The impact of immigration on the resources of the lower skilled
3. The differences in pay and opportunities between men and women
4. Government policy towards skills and education
5. Executive pay

Throughout we attempt to integrate theoretical issues, empirical evidence and questions of policy, drawing on research covering a range of OECD countries.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

10 lectures,
9 seminar classes,
1 drop-in session

Method of assessment

20% In Course Test
80% Examination (2 hour)

Preliminary reading

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module students will have:
• The ability to reflect critically on the application of economic models to real-world problems
• The ability to review a body of literature for arguments or evidence pertinent to an economic question, and draw conclusions from it;
• The ability to present critical and coherent arguments both verbally and in writing;
• Practice in planning and studying independently;
• The ability to retrieve information from a variety of sources.
• Knowledge of how to use MS Excel to solve and analyse data based problems

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