Market intervention and the public-policy project

Mon 17 July 2017


8:00 Breakfast
8:45 Director’s Introduction and Academic Briefing
9:00 Missing Markets And Second-Best Solutions  (Alexei Parakhonyak)
10:00 Project Tasks in Syndicates
11:15 Pricing Incentives Versus Quantity Controls  (Alexei Parakhonyak)
12:15 Break, followed by Lunch at 12:30
1:15 Project tasks in syndicates
3:15 Project Review: Lessons for Transport Policy  (Alexei Parakhonyak))
4:30 Climate Change and Low-Carbon Growth  (Cameron Hepburn)
7:00 Drinks Reception followed by Dinner at 7:30
8:45 Evening Speaker: Alison Munro


Market mechanisms work well when there are no “market failures.” Today we consider the first source of market failure, the so-called “externalities” i.e. when certain activities directly affect others without being transmitted via the market mechanism.  Examples are the negative spillover of pollution-generating production or the positive spillover stemming from copied research and development. This is a concern not just for policymakers, but also for the world of business, since spillovers can occur within the boundaries of a firm’s own supply chain. Today’s lectures consider the possible responses to spillover-generated inefficiencies. In parallel, we ask syndicate members to work on a structured public-policy project which puts simple economic tools into action; whereas there is a policy focus, the lessons also apply within private-sector organisations. The final lecture considers perhaps the largest externality of them all: Carbon dioxide and Global Warming. We ask whether the need for a Low Carbon Growth Path will lead to stagnation in advanced economies. Or will the quest for new technologies reignite growth prospects in Western economies?

Cameron Hepburn – University of Oxford

Cameron Hepburn is an economist with over a decade’s experience working on environmental and climate change issues, with particular interests in the theory and implementation of emissions trading, the economics and ethics of cost-benefit analysis, and the economics of apparently irrational individual behaviour. He has advised various governments and international institutions on environmental and climate policy, and has worked with a range of private sector clients on environmental and climate strategy. He currently holds Fellowships at Oxford University (New College and the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment) and is a Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics (Grantham Research Institute). He is also a member of the UK Defra Academic Panel and the Ofgem  Environmental Economists Panel,  an Associate  Editor of the Oxford Review of Economic Policy, and is a co-founder and Director of Climate Bridge Ltd  and Vivid Economics Ltd.  He holds a D.Phil. and an M.Phil. in Economics from the University of Oxford (as a Rhodes Scholar), and first class degrees in Law and Engineering from the University of Melbourne.

Alison Munro – HS2

Alison Munro was appointed Managing Director of Development at High Speed Two Limited (Phase Two) in September 2014, following 5 years as Chief Executive.​ She is responsible for the development of Phase Two of High Speed Two (HS2) from the West Midlands to Leeds and Manchester.Previously, Alison was a director in the Department for Transport, responsible for strategic roads policy, including developing a major motorway investment programme, and longer term planning of national networks.

Alexei Parakhonyak – University of Oxford

Alexei is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economics and Tutorial Fellow at Lincoln College, University of Oxford. After studies of Mathematical Methods in Economics, he worked in the financial modelling group in Deloitte. He completed his PhD in 2010 at Erasmus University Rotterdam and Tinbergen Institute and then moved to Higher School of Economics, Moscow. Alexei joined Oxford in 2015 where his research focuses on Industrial Organization, with a focus on consumer search theory and information asymmetries in consumer markets.