Workers and Firms in the Modern Economy (MSB275)

This course introduces topics that are essential to understand labor markets and firm production decisions in modern economies.

Course description for study year 2024-2025. Please note that changes may occur.


Course code




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The course will cover the following topics, of which the order may vary from year to year.

Workers: individual trade-offs between work and leisure; labor supply over the life cycle and retirement decisions; returns to training and education, human capital model, skills and occupational choice.

Firms and labor: minimum wages; automatization; wage-setting and rent-sharing.

Firms and taxation: value added taxes (VAT) and prices; taxation on profits and investment decisions; taxes and management in multinational firms.

Economy: agglomeration economies and market power; business cycles; imperfect information and principal/agent problem.

For many of the topics, theory will be contrasted by empirical evidence.

Learning outcome

Knowledge: Upon completion of the course, students will be able to:

  • develop and apply economic models to understand when and why workers enter & exit the labor market
  • internalize how decision-making around training and education affect long-run economic opportunities
  • understand how firms decide on their use of labor and capital in order to produce
  • explain how taxation both affects firms' decisions, and reveals how firms work
  • identify factors that affect the allocation of talent in the economy

Skills: Upon completion of the course, students will be able to:

  • understand, and apply evidence from, empirical economic papers in their professional interests
  • demonstrate abilities to deliver clear and effective presentations

Required prerequisite knowledge


Recommended prerequisites

MSB107 Business Economics


Oral exam and School exam

Form of assessment Weight Duration Marks Aid
Oral exam 3/10 Letter grades
School exam 7/10 4 Hours Letter grades None permitted

Course teacher(s)

Course coordinator:

Torfinn Harding

Course teacher:

Iuliia Dudareva

Course teacher:

Eric Perry Bettinger

Open for

Admission to Single Courses at UiS Business School
Master of Science in Accounting and Auditing Business Administration - Master of Science
Exchange programmes at UIS Business School

Course assessment

There must be an early dialogue between the course supervisor, the student union representative and the students. The purpose is feedback from the students for changes and adjustments in the course for the current semester.In addition, a digital subject evaluation must be carried out at least every three years. Its purpose is to gather the students experiences with the course.


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