Public Choice (POEC612) Course Detail

Course Name Course Code Season Lecture Hours Application Hours Lab Hours Credit ECTS
Public Choice POEC612 3 0 0 3 5
Pre-requisite Course(s)
Course Language Turkish
Course Type N/A
Course Level Ph.D.
Mode of Delivery Face To Face
Learning and Teaching Strategies Lecture, Discussion, Question and Answer.
Course Coordinator
Course Lecturer(s)
  • Prof. Dr. Sinan Sönmez
Course Assistants
Course Objectives To explain Public Choice Theory and evaluate the possibilities of its implementation
Course Learning Outcomes The students who succeeded in this course;
  • To understand the role of the State in the market economy, and the reason for collective choice: Theory and practice
  • To explore the role of the various voting rules in a direct democracy
  • To learn the properties of different institutions in a representative democracy
  • To learn normative public choice
Course Content Normative analysis of public choice, social choice theory, transition process from individual choice to collective choice, Condorcet Paradox, Arrow theorem, Black theorem, social welfare functions, positive analysis of public choice, economic analysis of political choice process.

Weekly Subjects and Releated Preparation Studies

Week Subjects Preparation
1 Public economics, welfare economics and public choice
2 Welfare economics and social welfare: -Walrasian general equilibrium -Paretian welfare economics
3 Public goods and externalities: -Supply of public goods: Models
4 Public goods and externalities: -Externalities -Coase theorem teoremi and property rights
5 Public choice in a direct democracy: -Choice of voting rule -Majority rule: positive and normative properties -Median voter theorem -Condorcet’s jury theorem -Arrow’s impossibility theorem -Alternatives to majority voting
6 Public choice in a direct democracy: -Condorcet’s jury theorem -Arrow’s impossibility theorem -Alternatives to majority voting
7 Mid Term
8 Temsili demokraside kamusal seçim: -İki partili sistem -Çok partili sistem -Stratejik oy verme ve oyun teorisi
9 Public choice in a representative democracy: -Multiparty systems -Paradox of voting -Rentseeking -Dictatorship
10 Political competition and macroeconomic performance: -Macroeconomic performance and political success -Opportunistic policy and partisan policy- making
11 Political competition and macroeconomic performance: -Voting behaviour -Interest groups, campaign expenditure and financing and lobbying
12 Social welfare functions: -Bergson-Samuelson -Axiomatic functions (Fleming, Harsanyi) - Ng -Nash
13 Social ordering and social contract: -Difficulties in a social ordering -A Just social contract
14 Social ordering and social contract: -Rawlsien social contract and utilitarian approach -Constitution as a –utilitarian- contract or a convention?
15 Constitutional economics -Two-stage theory of constitutions - Constitutional rights and liberal rights
16 Has public choice contributed anything to the strudy of politics -Can public choice can contribute to the positive study of political institutions? - Has public choice contributed anything to the normative study of political institutions?


Course Book 1. Mueller, Dennis C., (2007), Public Choice III, 7th printing, Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.
Other Sources 2. Buchanan, James M. and Tullock, Gordon, (1962), The Calculus of Consent. Logical Foundations of Constitutional Democracy, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan
3. Downs, Anthony, (1957), An Economic Theory of Democracy, New York, Harper and Row.
4. Tullock, Gordon, (2006), The Vote Motif, London: The Institute of Economic Affairs
5. Baake, Pio and Borck, Rainald (eds.) (2007), Public Economics and Public Choice, Berlin: Springer.
6. Cullis John and Jones, Philip, (1992), Public Finance and Public Choice, London: McGraw Hill.
7. Weingast,Barry, R. and Wittman, Donald A., (2006), Political Economy, New York: Oxford University Press
8. Hargreaves, Shaun P. and Varoufakis, Yanis, (1995), Game Theory. A Critical Introduction, London and New York: Routledge
9. Aleskerov Fuad, Ersel Hasan ve Yavuz Sabuncu, (1999), Seçimden Koalisyona-Siyasal Karar Alma-, İstanbul, YKY.
10. Nath, S.K., (1981), Refah Ekonomisine Bir Bakış, McMillan İktisat Serisi, İstanbul: Akbank Kültür Yayınları.
11. Buchanan, M. James (2003), “Public Choice, Politics without Romance”, Policy, 19 (3), 13-18.
12. Lemieux, Pierre. (2004), “Public Choice Revolution”, Regulation, Fall, 22-29.
13. Giersch, Thorsten. (2009) What Separates Public Choice and Public Finance from a Normative Perspective? A Comparison of the Normative Foundations of Both Programs, paper presented to EPCS 1010, April 8-11, İzmir.
14. Boadway, Robin. (1997), “Public Economics and the Theory of Public Policy”, The Canadian Journal of Economics,30 (4), 753-772.
15. Kirchner, Christian (2007), “Public Choice and New Institutional Economics, A Comparative Analysis in Search of Co-operation Potentials”, in Pio Baake and Rainald Borck (eds), Public Economics and Public Choice, Springer.
16. Holler, Manfred J. (2007), “The Machiavelli Program and the Dirty Hands Problem”, in Pio Baake and Rainal Borck (eds.). Public Economics and Public Choice, Springer.
17. Mueller, Dennis C. (2007), “Rights and Wrong”s, in Pio Baake and Rainal Borck (eds.), Public Economics and Public Choice, Springer.
18. Miller, Nicholas R. (2001), The Geometry of Voting Cycles, paper presented at the 2001 Annual meeting of the Public Choice Society, san Antonio, March 9-11.
19. Sen, Amartya. (1995), “Rationality and Social Choice”, The American Economic Review, 85(1), .1-24
20. Sen, Amartyra, (1977), “The Possibility of Social Choice”, American Economic Review, 67(1), 219-225.
21. Sen, Amartyra,(1987), Freedom of Choice: Concept and Content, WIDER Working Papers 25,
22. Sen, Amatyra, (1973), Behaviour and the Concept of Preference, inaugural lecture delivered at the London School of Economics on 1 February 1973 (
23. Sen, Amartyra, (1999), “Democracy as a Universal Value”, Journal of Democrarcy, 3(10), .3-17
24. Sen, Amartyra, (1979), Equality of What? The Tanner Lecture on Human Values, Stanford University, May 22
25. Lawrence, John Clifton (1999), The Possibility of Social Choice for 3 Alternatives, (pdf.dosyası).
26. Birks, Stuart, (2008), An Economic Theory of Democracy Revisited-Downs with Traction, Paper for the NZ Political Studies Association Conference, Massey University, Auckland, August
27. Congleton, Roger D., (2003), “The Political Economy of Gordon Tullock”, July
28. Ersel, Hasan, (2006), “Toplumsal Gönenç İşlevi, Arrow’un Olanaksızlık Teoremi ve Kişisel Fayda Karşılaştırması”, Nejat Bengül’e Armağan, (ed. Tuncer Bulutay), ss. 209-226, Ankara: Mülkiyeliler Vakfı Yayını, Nisan.
29. (Bulutay, Tuncer, (1979), Genel Denge, Ankara: Ankara üniv. SBF Yay. No: 434, ss. 70-75, 94-156)
30. (Sönmez, Sinan , (1987), Kamu Ekonomisi Teorisi, ss. 45-224)

Evaluation System

Requirements Number Percentage of Grade
Attendance/Participation - -
Laboratory - -
Application - -
Field Work - -
Special Course Internship - -
Quizzes/Studio Critics - -
Homework Assignments - -
Presentation - -
Project 1 25
Report - -
Seminar - -
Midterms Exams/Midterms Jury 1 25
Final Exam/Final Jury 1 50
Toplam 3 100
Percentage of Semester Work 50
Percentage of Final Work 50
Total 100

Course Category

Core Courses
Major Area Courses X
Supportive Courses
Media and Managment Skills Courses
Transferable Skill Courses

The Relation Between Course Learning Competencies and Program Qualifications

# Program Qualifications / Competencies Level of Contribution
1 2 3 4 5
1 To compare main theories and/or approaches in political economy and make a critical evaluation of each X
2 To compare main macroeconomic theories and/or approaches and make a critical evaluation of each X
3 To use complementary approaches from other relevant disciplines (e.g. political science, sociology) in order to solve problems requiring scientific expertise X
4 To develop the skills for establishing a micro-macro link in human and social sciences X
5 To analyze the main economic indicators and comment on them X
6 To acquire theoretical knowledge through literature survey and derive empirically testable hypothesis X
7 To be able to develop new approaches/theories for complex problems in political economy X
8 To apply critical thinking, statistical/econometric tools or other relevant quantitative and qualitative tools to new areas/problems X
9 To make a research design and carry it out within predetermined time frames X
10 To formulate and present policy recommendations based on academic research X
11 To continue learning and undertake advanced research independently X

ECTS/Workload Table

Activities Number Duration (Hours) Total Workload
Course Hours (Including Exam Week: 16 x Total Hours) 16 3 48
Special Course Internship
Field Work
Study Hours Out of Class 16 4 64
Presentation/Seminar Prepration
Homework Assignments
Quizzes/Studio Critics
Prepration of Midterm Exams/Midterm Jury 1 2 2
Prepration of Final Exams/Final Jury 1 3 3
Total Workload 117