Degree course: 
Corso di First cycle degree in ECONOMICS AND MANAGEMENT
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Compulsory subjects, characteristic of the class
First Trimestre
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (40 hours), Exercise (12 hours)

In order to fully understand the fiscal and economic components which the course is based on, good mathematical skills (specifically, algebra and derivative calculus) and a strong knowledge of microeconomic sources of market failure (e.g., public goods, asymmetric information) are mandatory.

Final Examination: 

The final practical exam consists of written questions (total time: 60 minutes) divided into two parts. The first part is composed by 15 multiple choice questions (correct answer: 1 point; wrong answer: -0.25 points; no answer: 0 points) and aims at verifying the knowledge of main public finance concepts. The second part, consisting of 3 open questions (maximum 5 points each) concerns the solution of either numerical exercises or the detailed explanation of different forms of public intervention on the economic system (taxes, redistribution, public spending). Mid-term exams and/or students' presentations are not provided.

Voto Finale

The course aims at analysing the role of public intervention on the economic system by the comparative study of the main fiscal and public-finance measures both in Italy and in Europe. With the main goal to give students the ability to analyse the economic reasons behind public choices and their procedures, the course would allow to understand the role of the State both in the design of redistributive and welfare policies in Italy using taxation and in the efficient allocation (spending) of public resources.

The course combines the analysis of public revenues, such as taxes on individual and corporate income, commodity taxation (value-added tax), to public spending (social security and welfare tools, healthcare, education and retirement). Specific extensions are devoted to the study of public choices affecting the macroeconomic equilibrium (deficit to GDP ratio, public debt). In the first part of the course, an introduction about the forms of public intervention on the Italian economy (6 hours) is followed by the detailed analysis of the individual income taxation, IRPEF (6 hours) and the corporate taxation, IRES, together with the main aspects of taxes on savings in the international contexts (4 hours). The module (madis completed by the analysis of commodity and consumption taxes (in particular, the Italian value-added tax, IVA) and the discussion of issues related to their impact on intra-UE and extra-UE trades (4 hours). In the second part of the course, after introducing the Italian welfare state by exploring current redistributive and social security programs (6 hours), the main public spending components, such as healthcare, education and retirement pensions (8 hours) are examined in depths to evaluate their financial sustainability and impact on social horizontal and vertical equity. In the final part of the course, main concepts of local and public finance are analysed with respect to well-established performance indicators of the Italian economy, i.e., deficit to GDP ratio, public debt (6 hours).

The main reference (handbook) is Scienza delle Finanze (Jonathan Gruber), EGEA ed., 2018. During the course other readings and additional teaching materials are suggested to successfully assess the mechanism of functioning of modern public finance. Specifically, students are asked to read some parts of Elementi di Scienza delle Finanze (Roberto Artoni), Il Mulino (7th ed., 2015). All the material, including classroom lessons and practical labs sessions as slides are available on the e-learning platform.


The course is structured on classroom-taught lessons (roughly 20 hours) and on-line teaching materials (papers, reports, part of handbooks) available on the university e-learning platform. Teaching sessions include practical labs (12 hours) organized to complete theoretical lessons by numerical simulations.

Office hours have to be scheduled with the teacher in advance.