Spring Semester Courses

The following course list is available for the upcoming IEF Fall Semester. All courses are under the Charles University Institute of Economic Studies (IES) in Prague.

Before selecting your courses, please familiarize yourself with the IEF Program curriculum.

Also note that you are recommended to complete certain prerequisite courses prior to your semester in Prague.
 

Prerequisites in order of importance include:

1. Microeconomics - One introductory-level course

2. Macroeconomics - One introductory-level course

3. At least one intermediate-level course in Macroeconomics OR Microeconomics

4. Introductory coursework in Calculus OR Econometrics (AP Calculus is accepted)


List of courses

Economics of Global Business  +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)


No additional prerequisites
Syllabus

This course deals with international trade, international financial flows, globalization of economic activities, but it focuses on additional topics and uses a different (more practical) perspective than the two afore-mentioned courses. It discusses many applied and institutional aspects of global economic activities and it provides a brief insight into actual methods used in international business. However, unlike many traditional courses of this type, which use rather soft and descriptive approaches, we will always try to provide also economic rationale and relevant empirical tests.

 

Introductory Banking +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

No additional prerequisites
Syllabus

This is an introductory course on banking. It provides students with an understanding of microeconomic, macroeconomic and political aspects of banking and financial markets. An analysis of financial institutions/banks is further developed by the assessment of their activities and key associated risks including credit, liquidity, market, operational risks and other non-financial risks. The course also outlines banking management techniques trying to create value for shareholders whilst keeping the risks in mind. Last but not least, the regulatory framework of the global banking industry will be discussed.

Economic Policy +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

No additional prerequisites
Syllabus

This course is intended for all students who want to supplement their theoretical studies with practical experiences from the 20th century’s economic policies. However, it is especially intended for those students who will seek employment in the financial and banking sector, particularly in state administration. After an introductory lecture, the course starts with a discussion of economic developments in the major economies from 1870-1913, stressing the importance of the gold standard. The following lectures will tackle the economic situation after WWI, the hyperinflation of the 1920s, and the restoration of the gold standard, the causes and depth of the Great Depression and the consequences of the Keynesian revolution for macroeconomic policies. The course continues with the period after WWII: the birth and building blocks of the Bretton-Woods system, the post-war reconstruction (including the Marshall Plan) and the birth of the European monetary system (EMS) and European integration.

Comparative Economics +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

No additional prerequisites
Syllabus

The aim of this course is to compare and contrast countries and regions on different stages of economic development and economic transition, using the new institutional approach. As the basic reason of economic growth and economic differences in developed countries, technological development is analyzed - using different approaches - in the broader economic and social framework, from inventions to innovations.

Microeconomics I +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

Additional prerequisites: Introductory Microeconomics. This course is intended ONLY for students who have not taken Intermediate Microeconomics at their home university.

Syllabus

This course builds on introductory microeconomics courses, extends the old, and introduces new concepts while standard analytic methods are applied. It focuses on the theory of consumer behavior. Specific topics include consumer preferences, optimal choice, consumer demand, revealed preferences, measurement of welfare changes, choice under uncertainty, and intertemporal choice.

Mathematics for Economists +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)
 

Additional prerequisites: Microeconomics and Calculus I

Syllabus

This course aims to familiarize students with the mathematical methods needed to study modern economics. Students will refresh and expand their math knowledge obtained in prior studies and develop the skills necessary to apply this knowledge to the economic models that they will start to build and explore.

Principles of Economics II +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)
 

Syllabus
Additional prerequisites: Calculus I.This introductory course is intended ONLY for IEF students who need to refresh their macroeconomics skills.

This course introduces economic thinking and basic principles of macroeconomics for beginner economics students as well as for non-economists.  This is an introductory economics course with lectures and seminars.  This course aims to familiarize students with the mathematical methods needed to study modern economics. Students will refresh and expand their math knowledge obtained in prior studies and develop the skills necessary to apply this knowledge to the economic models that they will start to build and explore.

 

Public Finance  +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

No additional prerequisites
Syllabus

The course deals with standard public finance topics: we start with an introduction to the economic rationale for government; we define public goods and basic principles of public expenditures. The major part of the course is then devoted to the theory of taxation, i.e. how taxes influence behavior, and analysis of public expenditure theories, namely public choice theory. We conclude with an overview of political economy and with some applications of the theories, we studied.

Strategic Management +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

No additional prerequisites
Syllabus

The aim of this course is to introduce the strategy building, implementation and evaluation process in the current dynamic business environment. Following the theory, this rather complex course will be based on gradual hands on project-building of the entire strategic framework. It will involve the performance management approach, linked to the process model and organization structure. Presentations and interactive communication of all particular phases of the strategic approach will be the key of this course.
 

Financial Management +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

Additional prerequisites: Financial Accounting, Intermediate Microeconomics. Advanced difficulty level.

Syllabus

The course is intended for undergraduate students and focuses on the basic issues of financial management and corporate finance. At the beginning, some terms of corporate finance will be presented (financial analysis of the company´s statements, criteria for investment decisions under risk conditions, etc.). As a background to corporate finance, a present value "PV" of cash flows is outlined (the concept of PV is important for the calculation of the price of bonds and shares, project evaluation, for calculation of duration, etc.). Furthermore, terms such as compound and simple interest and discount factor will be clarified. Further lectures will present a basic model of the capital market - capital asset pricing model (CAPM), security market line (SML) and its shifts as a result of risk aversion and inflation. The last part of the course deals with the calculation and application of α, β - coefficients for estimating the price of common stocks and bonds which are used in analyzing companies´ financial costs. This approach permits integration of various financing alternatives with respect to cost of capital (weighted average costs of capital - WACC).


International Finance +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)
 

Additional prerequisites: Prior coursework in Finance or International Trade highly advised. Advanced difficulty level.


Syllabus

This course covers, with a focus on both theory and empirics, basic topics in international finance (exchange rate economics & international macroeconomics) at undergraduate level. The course does not deal with international business methods (logistics, use of letters of credits etc.), instead it focuses on theory and policy analysis and attempts to provide some insight into questions such as the following ones:
• Why determines exchange rates?
• How do national economic policies influence external equilibrium of an economy?
• What effect have different foreign exchange policies and foreign exchange arrangements have on economic stability and economic growth?
• What causes balance of payments crises/international financial crises?
• When it is optimal for several countries to share one currency?
• How many global currencies do we really need?
 

Health Economics
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

Note: Offered at the Master's level but accessible to IEF students.
Syllabus

This course features a series of lectures on health economics issues. The course provides students with the framework to understand how health systems are organized from the point of view of funding, financing, purchasing, provision of health care and regulation of health systems. Topics regarding performance, effectiveness, and quality of health systems are also discussed.

 

Corporate Governance +
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

Note: Offered at the Master's level but accessible to IEF students.
Syllabus

Corporate Governance Seminar - this course examines corporate governance practices around the world with a special attention given to the transition countries. The class will also discuss several general issues related to the board and the role played by legal protection of investor rights. We will discuss how the corporate governance has evolved over last ten years in the Czech Republic (and other transition countries) and where it lags behind European or US standards. Discussed will be also the impacts of global financial crisis on CG models in EU and USA. The course is based on an extensive list of readings that will be required as a basis for the class’ discussions.

International Political Economy+
3 U.S. credits (6 ECTS)

Note: Offered at the Master's level but accessible to IEF students.
Syllabus

The aim of the class is to provide students with basic introduction into the “international political economy” (IPE) field. The course is based on active participation of students who are required to read compulsory literature for each class and debate the papers. The course is using two streams of literature: academic literature (papers and textbooks) and topical articles/papers (e.g. from the Economist or Foreign Affairs) covering current policy issues (e.g. The Economist or Foreign Affairs). The goal of this approach to literature is to use IPE research as guidance in real world policy debates that help us understand positions of opposing policy makers.

The main “applied” or policy focus of the course is on the debates associated with US elections and new president Donald Trump. Therefore the class topics are primarily shifted towards trade regimes and the impact of globalization.