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Principles of Microeconomics - JPM322
Title: Principles of Microeconomics
Guaranteed by: Department of Political Science (23-KP)
Faculty: Faculty of Social Sciences
Actual: from 2014
Semester: winter
E-Credits: 8
Examination process: winter s.:
Hours per week, examination: winter s.:2/2, Ex [HT]
Capacity: unknown / unknown (unknown)
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: not 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.
Incompatibility : JEB101, JEM163
Interchangeability : JEB101, JEM163
Is incompatible with: JEM163
Is interchangeable with: JEM163
Examination dates   Schedule   Noticeboard   
Last update: PhDr. Jan Soudek (02.10.2013)

Principles of Economics I (JEB101) and Principles of Microeconomics (JPM322)

Winter Semester 2013-14, Charles University, Faculty of Social Sciences

This course introduces economic thinking and basic principles of microeconomics for economics students as well as for non-economists. The lectures will be the same for both Principles of Economics I (PoE) and Principles of Microeconomics (PoM). External guest lecturers will be invited to contribute to the lectures and thus enrich the course. The course begins with the first lecture on 2nd October at 8 am in room no. 314. The location of all lecture and seminar rooms is the Institute of Economic Studies at Opletalova 26, Praha.

This is an introductory microeconomics course with lectures and seminars for students of:

  • Bachelor in Economics and Finance (as a mandatory course).
  • Bakalářské studium Ekonomie (mandatory, as an alternative to Ekonomie I).
  • International Economic and Political Studies (mandatory as PoM).
  • Any degree at Charles University with interest in economics (optional).

Lectures and seminars











Petr Janský

web, email

Seminar Standard




Václav Korbel

web, email

Seminar Interest




Jan Šolc

web, email

Seminar PoM




Jan Soudek

web, email

Seminar PoM is aimed at students of Principles of microeconomics (mostly IEPS students), who have a priority access. Other students can theoretically attend this seminar as well, but they need to fit in the small room.

Seminar Standard is designed to help students learn economics and get the best grade in this course.

Seminar Interest is for curious and talented students who are keen to learn about economic topics beyond the minimum requirements of this course.

Furthermore, Jan Šolc is responsible for Aplia and Jan Soudek for written exams and the Principles of Microeconomics seminar and projects - so please do not hesitate to contact them in case you have questions related to these issues.


The course follows the material that is present in almost identical form in one of the following two textbooks (and also their earlier or later editions):

§  Mankiw, N.G., Taylor, M.P.: Economics (2nd or earlier edition). The chapter numbers in the weekly schedule below relate to this textbook.

§  Mankiw, N.G..: Principles of Economics (6th edition or earlier edition).

Students are encouraged to read one of these textbooks. There are a number of copies of the Economics textbook available in the IES library (and some in the CERGE-EI library). Students can also buy their own textbooks. Also please note that a number of other introductory economics texts provide almost equivalent service to the student as the above mentioned textbooks.

The student hand-outs and lecture presentations will be regularly updated at the SIS course pages, to which all the students should sign up. The supporting web pages of this course include the webpage of the textbook, which has useful student hand-outs and other student resources.

Requirements and assessment

Regular lectures and seminars are organised for the benefit of the students, who are encouraged to provide constructive feedback during the semester so that teaching can be altered accordingly for their greater benefit. Attendance at lectures is voluntary, but highly recommended. Furthermore, experience shows that there is a strong positive correlation between attendance in class and good results in exams.

This course offers two main alternatives for final examination. Students can decide either to fulfil assignments mainly in an online Aplia system during the semester or to sit in for a written exam at the end of the semester. It is also possible to sit in for the written exam after trying Aplia, which would count as the first attempt at a final examination. Aplia assignments include problem sets and readings to be submitted on a weekly basis - more on Aplia and how to purchase it is at the end of this syllabus. For both Aplia and the exam, the grading follows this simple rule: the total number of points received is divided by the maximum number of points that could have been received.

The details of requirements and assessments differ between PoE and PoM as described below. However, the grading is same in both cases. Total values higher than 90% correspond to grade 1 (výborně in Czech), between 80% and 90% to grade 2 (chvalitebně), between 70% and 80% to grade 3 (dobře).

For students of PoE, the written exam or Aplia results (plus any extra activity points from seminars) account for 100% of the final grade. Additionally, students are required to be present at least at one of the seminars at least some of the weeks. Students are required to be active at seminars (and recognised so by tutors) at least in two weeks in order to pass this course. Tutors will record the activities by the students and they will specify the details during seminars. Each additional week of activity in one of the seminars above the two weeks’ threshold will add 0.5 points towards the result from the written exam or Aplia. Students can thus improve their grade by being active in the seminars by up to 5 points.

For students of PoM, the final grade has the following components (students are required to achieve at least a half of the maximum from each of them): Aplia or the written text (60% of the final grade), project presentation (15%), project essay (15%), participation on seminars (10%; students get up to 2 point every time you deliver an approximately one-page project appraisal or come to the seminar and actively participate in the discussions).

Weekly schedule

Week (Winter)

Day (2013)


Mankiw chapters


2nd October

Ten Principles of Economics; Thinking Like an Economist; course introduction

1 + 2


9th October

Interdependence and the Gains from Trade (a guest lecture by Vilém Semerák)



16th October

The Market Forces of Supply and Demand; Elasticity and Its Application; Supply, Demand and Government Policies

4 + 5 + 6


23rd October

Consumers, Producers, and the Efficiency of Markets; The Costs of Taxation; International Trade; (a guest lecture by - to be announced)

7 + 8 + 9


30th October

Externalities (the Coase theorem); Public Goods and Common Resources (the Tragedy of the Commons) (a guest lecture by Jan Procházka)

10 + 11


6th November

The Design of the Tax System (Efficiency and Equity) (a guest lecture by Klára Kalíšková)



13th November

The Costs of Production; Firms in Competitive Markets (a guest lecture by - to be announced)

13 + 14


20th November

Monopoly; Oligopoly; Monopolistic Competition (a guest lecture by - to be announced)

15 + 16 + 17


27th November

The Markets for the Factors of Production; Earnings and Discrimination (a guest lecture by - to be announced)

18 + 19


4th December

Income Inequality and Poverty (a guest lecture by - to be announced)



11th December

The Theory of Consumer Choice (a guest lecture by - to be announced)



18th December

Frontiers of Microeconomics (a guest lecture by - to be announced)


For students, who decide to try Aplia: Aplia Assignments

There are two equal options how to pass the final examinations in this course. Aplia is one of them and a written exam at the end of the semester is the other. Aplia is an online assignment system that provides students with the opportunity to fulfil their course requirements gradually during the semester on a weekly basis. Students choosing the Aplia examination option pay the Aplia supplier GBP 13.15 for this course (around 400 CZK). Aplia offers a grace period of unlimited access to this course till October 20th so that students can try it out without or before paying.

Instructions on how to register for this course in Aplia:

  1. Go to and click on "Create a new account", "Student account".
  2. Fill in the course key: D6X6-TAQA-QFNC
  3. Confirm course information (Principles of Economics - 2013/2014, Petr Jansky), fill in and then confirm your personal information, accept email confirmation and pay now or later.
  4. Login at Aplia to your course and start with your assignments!

Academic honesty is expected from all students in the class.


For students of Principles of Microeconomics and IEPS: Projects

For students of PoM, essays and presentations (projects) are a part of the requirements. For these projects, students of PoM should form pairs. These teams of two students should choose a topic from the list available below and sign up for it at one of the first three sessions of the seminar PoM (Wednesday 14:00-15:20 in room 105) on a first come, first served basis. Teams are expected to write a 6-to-8-page long essay (2000-2500 words) and prepare a 15-minute presentation on the same topic. The deadline for submitting the essay is always the Wednesday 23:59, one week before presentation. Presentations will be presented at the seminar PoM (Wednesday 14:00-15:20 in room 105) according to the time schedule below.



Day (2013)


Topics of projects


20th November 

Monopoly; Oligopoly; Monopolistic Competition 

Tullock, Gordon: The Welfare Costs of Tariffs, Monopolies, and Theft

Monopoly as a driver of Inovation


27th November 

The Markets for the Factors of Production; Earnings and Discrimination 

Coase, R. - The Institutional Structure of Production

Becker -The Economic Way of Looking at Life

Robert W. Fogel, Douglass C. North: Economic Performance through Time


4th December

Income Inequality and Poverty 

Paul Krugman: In praise of cheap labor

A, SEN: The Possibility of Social Choice

Alan B. Krueger: The Rise and Consequences of Inequality in the United States


11th December

The Theory of Consumer Choice 

 James M. Buchanan: The Constitution of Economic Policy

 Current fiscal difficulties: how we got there? And how we can get out?

Ideal tax system and Mirrlees Review


18th December

Frontiers of Microeconomics

Stigler, G. J. - Fundamental contributions to the study of market processes and the analysis of the structure of industries

Stiglitz, J.: Information and the Change in the Paradigm in Economics

Hayek, F. A. -  Research on the interrelations between economic, social and political processes.


 Note that any topic relevant to Microeconomics not included in the list can be added after the approval of Jan Soudek, with whom you should also communicate any related problems or questions.

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