This introductory course consists of two different parts.
The first part studies the lives and theoretical contributions of a limited number of leading economists who have shaped the history of economic thought (Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Joseph Schumpeter, John Maynard Keynes, Milton Friedman).
The second part deals with the serious economic problems facing contemporary economies and societies (economic crises, unemployment, inflation, economic growth, human development, new technologies, new forms of work organization, productivity growth, economic institutions, environmental issues, globalization etc.).
It critically discusses alternative economic policies (Keynesian – neoliberal) to deal with the ongoing global economic crisis.
It is worth mentioning that Political Economy is a social science somehow incorporating value judgments and cultural elements, resulting in contradictory economic theories and conflicting models of economic policy.