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Course, academic year 2023/2024
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Public Economics - JEM203
Title: Public Economics
Czech title: Public Economics
Guaranteed by: Institute of Economic Studies (23-IES)
Faculty: Faculty of Social Sciences
Actual: from 2020
Semester: summer
E-Credits: 6
Examination process: summer s.:combined
Hours per week, examination: summer s.:2/1, Ex [HT]
Capacity: unlimited / unlimited (97)
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Teaching methods: full-time
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
priority enrollment if the course is part of the study plan
Guarantor: doc. Petr Janský, M.Sc., Ph.D.
Teacher(s): Mgr. Evgeniya Dubinina
doc. Petr Janský, M.Sc., Ph.D.
PhDr. Miroslav Palanský, Ph.D.
doc. Ing. Ondřej Schneider, M.Phil., Ph.D.
Class: Courses for incoming students
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download Public Economics - syllabus 2023.pdf Syllabus 2023 PhDr. Miroslav Palanský, Ph.D.
Annotation -
Last update: PhDr. Miroslav Palanský, Ph.D. (15.02.2022)
This course introduces advanced thinking in public economics and public finance for graduate students of economics.
The objective is to provide students with a thorough understanding of research in selected topics in public economics and public finance. By actively participating in this course, students improve their understanding of the role of government, taxation, and public budgets. Students learn how to use the tools of economics for the analysis of government expenditures and tax policies.

The course uses Microsoft Teams.
Code to join: dyxv8fv
Link to join:
Literature -
Last update: doc. Petr Janský, M.Sc., Ph.D. (13.11.2019)

Selected recommended literature

Clausing, K. (2013). Who Pays the Corporate Tax in a Global Economy? National Tax Journal, 66(1), 151–84.

Fuest, C., Peichl, A., & Siegloch, S. (2018). Do Higher Corporate Taxes Reduce Wages? Micro Evidence from Germany. American Economic Review, 108(2), 393–418.

Chapter 3 of  Cobham, A., & Janský, P. (forthcoming). Estimating illicit financial flows: A critical guide to the data, methodologies and findings. Retrieved from

Tørsløv, T. R., Wier, L. S., & Zucman, G. (2018). The Missing Profits of Nations (Working Paper No. 24701). National Bureau of Economic Research.

Dowd, T., Landefeld, P., & Moore, A. (2017). Profit shifting of U.S. multinationals. Journal of Public Economics, 148, 1–13.

Dharmapala, D. (2014). What Do We Know about Base Erosion and Profit Shifting? A Review of the Empirical Literature. Fiscal Studies, 35(4), 421–448.

Clausing, K. A. (2016). The Effect of Profit Shifting on the Corporate Tax Base in the United States and Beyond. National Tax Journal, 69(4), 905–934.

Alstadsæter, A., Johannesen, N., & Zucman, G. (forthcoming). Tax Evasion and Inequality. American Economic Review.

Slemrod, J. (2007). Cheating ourselves: The economics of tax evasion. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 21(1), 25–48.

Kleven, H. J., Knudsen, M. B., Kreiner, C. T., Pedersen, S., & Saez, E. (2011). Unwilling or Unable to Cheat? Evidence From a Tax Audit Experiment in Denmark. Econometrica, 79(3), 651–692.

Alstadsaeter, A., Johannesen, N., & Zucman, G. (2018). Who Owns the Wealth in Tax Havens? Macro Evidence and Implications for Global Inequality. Journal of Public Economics.

Zucman, G. (2013). The Missing Wealth of Nations: Are Europe and the U.S. Net Debtors or Net Creditors? The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 1321–1364.

Piketty, T., Saez, E., & Zucman, G. (2018). Distributional National Accounts: Methods and Estimates for the United States. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 133(2), 553–609.

Ravallion, M. (2018). What might explain today’s conflicting narratives on global inequality? WIDER Working Paper.

Decancq, K., Goedemé, T., Van den Bosch, K., & Vanhille, J. (2013). The evolution of poverty in the European Union: concepts, measurement and data. For Better For Worse, For Richer For Poorer: Labour Market Participation, Social Redistribution and Income Poverty in the EU. Retrieved from

Barr, N., & Diamond, P. (2006). The economics of pensions. Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 22(1), 15–39.

Lustig, N. (Ed.). (2018). Commitment to Equity Handbook. Estimating the Impact of Fiscal Policy on Inequality and Poverty. Brookings Institution Press and CEQ Institute, Tulane University.

La Porta, R., F. Lopez-de-Silanes and A. Shleifer (2008), The Economic Consequences of Legal Origins, Journal of Economic Literature 46(2): 285-332.

Renda, A., Schrefler, L., Luchetta, G., & Zavatta, R. (2013). Assessing the costs and benefits of regulation. Brüssel: Centre for European Policy Studies.

Dennis C.Mueller: Public Choice, 3rd edition, Cambridge University Press 2003, chapter 22: Government size

Joe Slemrod: "Optimal Taxation and Optimal Tax Systems" (Journal of Economic Perspectives, Winter 1990).

Samuelson: "Theory of Optimal Taxation" (Journal of Public Economics, 1986, pp. 137-143).

Frank Ramsey: "A Contribution to the Theory of Taxation" (Economic Journal, March 1927, pp. 47-61.

Metcalf, Gilbert: “The National Sales Tax: Who Bears the Burden”, CATO Policy Analysis No. 289, December 1997.

Thomas Piketty: Optimal Labor Income Taxation, Handbook of Public Econnomics, Volume 5 (also a NBER paper No.18521, November 2012).

Requirements to the exam -
Last update: doc. Petr Janský, M.Sc., Ph.D. (13.11.2019)

Assessment and grades


Students are evaluated on the basis of their paper, its presentation and discussion, reviews of other students’ papers as well as published papers and a written exam. Most of the course evolves around various research papers in an interactive way that intensifies learning. Lectures are mostly based on research papers published in academic journals. Every student writes a paper answering a research question related to public economics and public finance. The paper’s quality (up to 40 points) and its public presentation and related discussion at the end of the semester (10 points) make up half of the grade. The students’ ability to critically evaluate another student’s paper and present the evaluation in a written as well as oral form (10 points) as well as a written review of one published research paper (10 points) count together for one fifth of the grade. A written exam at the end of the semester makes up the rest of the grade (30 points). From each of these five requirements (paper, presentation, evaluation, review, exam) students are required to have at least a half of the maximum points (20, 5, 5, 5 and 15, respectively). Students’ total point values correspond to the grades A-F according to the following schedule of intervals: A: [100-90); B: [90-80); C: [80-70); D: [70-60); E: [60-50); F (Fail): 50 and less.

Syllabus -
Last update: Ing. Monika Hollmannová (18.02.2020)

  Topics covered in the course

  1. Welfare economics
  2. Direct taxes
  3. Indirect taxes
  4. Tax incidence
  5. Corporate taxation
  6. Tax avoidance
  7. Tax evasion
  8. Inequality
  9. Pensions and social benefits
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