Business Economics MA(SocSci)

Economic Geography ECON4103

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: Adam Smith Business School
  • Credits: 15
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

Understanding how and why cities evolve, how regions specialise and grow (or decline), and how these changes relate to other economic and non-economic outcomes is crucial for a large range of policy questions. Local and national governments in countries at all stages of development are concerned with, for example, investments in transport infrastructure, policies governing trade and migration, directed regional development policy, the merits of special economic zones, and the impact of urban pollution. This course will introduce students to: the empirical evidence on cities and regions; the historical context; the theoretical concepts underpinning agglomerations and specialisation; and subsequent policy and applications.


10 x 2-hour lectures.


Please refer to MyCampus for timetable.

Excluded Courses





ILO being assessed

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

The aims of this course are for students to gain:

■ an understanding of the empirical facts on the nature of cities and regions and how they change over time;

■ the ability to analyse what causes changes in cities and regions, and how they relate to changes in other economic and non-economic outcomes;

■ the ability to describe and critically analyse policies related to economic geography;

■ the ability to take responsibility for their own learning (self-directed learning), and to acquire skills relevant to a wide range of situations beyond this course: how to think analytically and to express themselves clearly and directly.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students should be able to:

1. describe in detail using evidence the nature of cities and regions and their evolution over time;

2. apply economic models to analyse in-depth the underlying causes of agglomeration and regional specialisation and their connections with other economic and non-economic outcomes;

3. construct focused arguments based on analysis of policy using coherent general principles and effectively communicate to an expert as well as non-expert audience;

4. effectively work in groups to communicate the nature and effectives of government policies relating to economic geography;

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.