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School of Social Sciences

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BAEcon Economics
Learn how the social sciences can help you to understand today's world.

BAEcon Economics

Year of entry: 2018

Course unit details:
Development Economics IIA

Unit code ECON20321
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by Economics
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


See course Blackboard pages.


Unit title Unit code Requirement type Description
ECON10041 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
ECON10042 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
ECON10081 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
ECON10082 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Pre requisites: At least 20 credits of level 1 Micro & Macroeconomics units:- EITHER (ECON10041 and ECON10042) OR (ECON10081 and ECON10082)

Students must have taken at least one of the following combinations (compulsory Pre-Requisite):

  • (ECON10171 and ECON10181) or
  • (ECON10081 and ECON10082) or
  • (ECON10041 and ECON10042)


To familiarise students with models and perspectives which have been used to analyse the process of growth and structural transformation in developing economies. Some basic policy problems facing less developed countries are also introduced. A critical understanding of how different economists have analysed the development process will be expected.

Learning outcomes

At the end of this course unit it is expected that students will be able to demonstrate both an understanding of and ability to critically engage with models and perspectives which have been used to analyse the process of growth and structural transformation in developing economies. Students should also appreciate and be able to address some basic policy problems facing less developed countries. Competing perspectives are part of this course and ability to understand these and take sides in debates is expected.



Characteristics of Underdevelopment (C3, Thirlwall)

Basic Needs (C3, Thirlwall)

Structural Change (C3, Thirlwall)

  • Stages theories.
  • Industrialisation and Growth: Kaldor's "growth laws".

Theories of Economic Growth (C5, Thirlwall)

  • Classical Smith Ricardo Malthus and Marx.
  • Keynesian: Harrod-Domar.
  • Neo-classical/Endogenous.

Land, Labour and Agriculture (C6, Thirlwall)

  • Role of Agriculture in Development.
  • Lewis Model (and Lewis (1954)).

The Big Debate

  • Resource Allocation in Developing Countries
  • Rival views on the Role of the State and Market (C10, Thirlwall)

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and tutorial classes.

Employability skills

Analytical skills
Synthesis and analysis of data and information. Critical reflection and evaluation.
Problem solving
Planning, conducting and reporting on research. Undertaking academic research using library, electronic and online resources.

Assessment methods

Final Exam (one and half hours):

  • 20 multiple choice questions (40%).
  • Essay (60%).

Feedback methods

MCQs in the lecture slot and a mock exam conducted in a lecture slot towards the end of the course. The main forms of feedback on this course are the scores from the MCQs and the mock exam – responses to issues raised on the MCQ sheets and the Mock Exam, office hours and ad hoc meetings with academic staff, discussions in tutorials or at the end of the lecture and via the discussion group in blackboard. 

Recommended reading

The course uses:

  • Thirlwall, A.P. and Penélope Pacheco-López (2017) Economics of Development: Theory and Evidence. 10th edition.
  • BUT earlier editions are also fine (Thirlwall, A.P. (2011), Economic and Development, 9th edition, Palgrave: Macmillan and eds 6-8  entitled Growth and Development, Palgrave: Macmillan).


We will also read:

  • Lewis, W. Arthur (1954) Economic Development with Unlimited Supplies of Labour, Manchester School, May Volume 22, Issue 2, pages 139–191.


Some other articles and books will be referenced in the lectures. These may be made available or referenced on the Blackboard site.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 1.5
Lectures 22
Tutorials 5
Independent study hours
Independent study 71.5

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Nicholas Weaver Unit coordinator

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