Economics and management of the liberalisation and regulation of markets

Economics and management of the liberalisation and regulation of markets

  • Study programme and level:The joint doctoral study programme Governance and Economics in the Public Sector (third cycle)
  • 2nd year
  • 5 ECTS
  • Course type: Elective course
  • Lectures: 20
  • Seminar: 20
  • Other forms of study: 20
  • Individual work: 90
  • Lecturer: Nevenka Hrovatin, PhD

1. Objectives and competences


  • To understand the interlink and interdependence of regulation and liberalisation of network industries in the EU,
  • to differentiate the role of various stakeholders in economic regulation and to advocate their interests,
  • to critically evaluate the current regulatory practice in the EU and Slovenia,
  • to develop new knowledge and to understand the current theoretical foundations of the economics of regulation,


  • ability of the in-depth critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis of complex ideas,
  • development of critical reflection and self-reflection in professional and research work,
  • ability to work in an interdisciplinary team,
  • to conduct independent, original and publishable research in the field of regulation of public utilities.

2. Content (Syllabus outline)

  • What is regulation, types of regulation and theoretical foundations of economic regulation
  • Why is the economic regulation of markets needed and what does it incorporate: what to liberalisalie and what to regulate?
  • Theoretical foundations of price regulation: a normative pricing theory for natural monopolies (marginal cost prices, efficient prices: Ramsey prices, peak-load prices, non-linear prices, shortcomings of the normative pricing theory
  • Regulation of natural monopolies in practice:  rate or return (ROR) regulation) and price cap regulation (RPI-X)
  • The role of benchmarking in economic regulation
  • Regulation of quality
  • Analysis of the liberalisation and regulation of the utilities markets in the EU:  electricity, gas, electronic communications, transport, communal utilites (water, waste, etc.)
  • Analysis of the liberalisation and regulation of utilites in Slovenia: the assesment of the state of the art
  • Fundamentals of the economic aspects of environmental regulation 

3.  Readings

  • Crew M., Parker D. (2006): International Handbook on Economic Regulation. Edward Elgar Publishing Limited (poglavja 1,3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17 (str. 1–34, 63–105, 117–163, 188–208, 255–301, 325–393).
  • Viscusi, W.K., Harrington J.E. Jr. in Vernon J.M. (uredniki) (2005) Economics of Regulation and Antitrust (4. izdaja). Cambridge (Massachusetts), London (VB): MIT Press, str. 355–500.

4. Intended learning outcomes

Systematic understanding of the discipline economics of regulation and its research methods; application of theoretical knowledge to problem solving in regulatory practice; analysis of regulatory problems and suggestions for appropriate solutions; evaluation of regulation of different utilities; utilisation of theoretical and practical knowledge for the research of new models and methods of regulation.

5. Learning and teaching methods

The course work consist of lectures, in class seminars and indvidual study and research work.

  • Lectures are aimed at representing the selected topics in the field. They are chosen with regard to the the theoretical developments, legislation and regulatory practice.
  • Seminars (in class) are dedicated to the discussion of selected topics and representation of the seminar papers in class.
  • Other: students write the seminar paper, in which they analyse a specific topic in the field of economics of regulation.
  • Individual study for the exam.

6. Assessment

Participants write and present the paper (seminar) in class - 50%
Final written exam - 50%