Oxford University Business Economics Programme

Summer Programme 2022 Fundamental Economics: Economics of Business Success

Monday 11 July to Friday 15 July


Fundamental Economics: Economics of Business Success


Traditionally, the core programme is run over the course of 2 weeks, but for our 70th year, we are introducing a new hybrid format to allow you greater flexibility and a more comprehensive learning experience.

We are offering two options for this Programme.

OPTION 1: The ‘Full Programme’ combines 20 online lectures with a 5-day residential ‘tutorial week’. The lectures will cover 10 distinct topics and will be provided to you well in advance of the tutorial week so that you can make the most of your time with our tutors.

OPTION 2: The ‘Lectures Only’ option means you can pay for the 20 online lectures to view at your leisure. 


Programme fees

Full Programme: £12,500.00 (Includes all lectures and accommodation costs)

Lectures only: £1,950.00

Fundamental Economics offers participants an intensive overview of the World of Economics. We will start with the fundamentals of supply and demand, and finish with the latest state-of-the-art models of economic growth. Our programme gives participants the economic grounding necessary to understand current issues, such as climate change, globalisation and the potentially long-lasting economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The lectures will provide you with all the theoretical background, but the intensive tutorial week is where you will be able to dive deeper and broaden your understanding of each topic. The residential week is built around small discussion groups – all led by experienced Oxford University tutors and researchers.

You will also participate in group projects where you will work with real-life scenarios that are directly related to the programme material.

At the end of each day, your group will present and discuss what you have learned. We will also encourage you to challenge the ideas presented and discuss how what you have learned relates to your own at-work experiences.


Online registration is now open. Click here to begin (the registration form will open in a new window).

“A brilliant analysis, very thought provoking, and just what you would expect from OUBEP. Changes your view of how the world works too, critically and economically.”

About the

The Oxford University Business Economics Programme is an immersive executive programme based in Oxford at the Department of Economics.

Our core objective is to help you to develop the level of critical thinking required of a future leader by combining high-calibre academic tuition, and discussion sessions with industry-leading keynote speakers. All in the company of a diverse group of delegates who share a similar vision.

Our intensive programme allows you to focus and explore economic theory and its real-world application – so that you can better understand the challenges and choices that today’s businesses face and the impact of those choices on the wider world.

This year, we are celebrating our 70th anniversary and are excited to introduce a new programme format that accommodates modern work practices and maintains our exemplary teaching standards.

Topics and Lectures

Topics and


(Missing) markets

Can economics help us understand the current climate crisis? The short answer is yes! In certain situations, markets may “fail” or even be “missing” altogether. Prices of goods/services may not reflect the “true” social costs. Pollution and global warming are examples of such market failures. In these lectures, we introduce the basic concepts of markets, when and how they may fail and what remedies may be used to help.


  • The basics of supply and demand
  • Missing markets and saving the planet


Market power

How can businesses strike the right balance between volume and profit margins and how does this trade-off depend on market competitors? What happens when there are no physical resource constraints, e.g. for information-based products? Our next two lectures guide you through the basic rules you need to apply when choosing between scale and price. We also demonstrate how these rules can change depending on the economic environment.


  • Exploiting market power
  • Pricing, product differentiation and market positioning


Strategic reasoning

Understanding the competitive landscape is crucial when entering a new market. But what if your competitors are aware of your offering and take an offensive stance? Should you still proceed, or will the threat make the post-entry battle unprofitable? Here we provide the basics of game theory and apply them to familiar market entry scenarios.


  • Basics of game theory
  • Future play and market entry


The power of information

What happens when you and your customers do not have the same information? From used car sales to financial markets and complex insurance – there is a hierarchy of understanding. Market participants often know more than others about asset valuations and underlying performance, and in these lectures, we show you the power of information and signalling. We also discuss how to elicit – otherwise unobserved information – by a clever design of contracts.


  • Screening and signalling
  • Corporate finance
  • Contract design


Auctions: How to bid and when it’s better to
lose than win

What kind of bidding strategy will help you win at a house auction? Can we save endangered species with auctions? Can mere contract or product design help you overcome customer impulses such as loss aversion or lack of self-control? This set of lectures explore the importance of interpreting human behaviour and will provide you with the tools to understand these types of situations.


  • Auction design


The basics of behavioural economics

What are the key behavioural biases and how do they affect your approach to pricing policy and marketing strategy? How can you motivate employees that care about reciprocity and fairness? In this special topic lecture, we will explore how psychology and economics interact, and how understanding this interplay will help you decide the best way to incentivise your customers and your workforce.


  • The basics of behavioural economics


The macroeconomy

How do we measure Gross Domestic Product (GDP)? What does it tell us about the macroeconomy? What other indicators help us understand the health of our economy? And what role does the intermediation of financial resources play in this regard? These lectures provide an insight into the macroeconomy and how it works.


  • GDP and beyond
  • The role of the financial sector


Saving the economy from recessions

What is Quantitative Easing and how is it different from the other “conventional” tools that central banks can use to help prop up economies? Will the large-scale fiscal responses to the COVID-19 recession lead to unsustainable national debts? These lectures explore the potential answers to these questions using basic, yet powerful, frameworks so you can understand why economies experience booms and recessions.


  • Central banks, inflation targeting and quantitative easing
  • Fiscal policy and debt sustainability


Globalisation, nationalism and supply chains

How did COVID-19 change the trade-off between globalisation and nationalism when it disrupted global supply chains? Who benefits and who loses when the USA and China enter a trade war? In these lectures, we discuss the rationale behind free trade and we study the winners and losers from trade liberalisations. We also touch upon the magnitude and importance of global supply chains and what happens to trade policy when they are disrupted.


  • The basics of international trade
  • Globalisation and supply chain disruptions
  • Winners and losers of trade liberalisation


Inequality, entrepreneurship and economic

Why does inequality within and across countries persist and what drives economic growth? How can entrepreneurship and startups affect the macroeconomy? In this final series of lectures, we will develop your understanding of economic growth and inequality in the current environment. We will also demonstrate how important entrepreneurship and startups are for growth and highlight concerns around the barriers and disruptions that startups face, such as those during the Great Financial Crisis or the COVID-19 pandemic.


  • Growth within and across countries
  • Entrepreneurs, startups and innovation

Programme Tutors

The core programme is curated and delivered by the department of Economics’ leading academics whose tutoring experience and cutting edge research make the programme insightful, engaging and unique to OUBEP.

Abi Adams_Prassl

Abi Adams-Prassl

Director of External Engagement

Abi is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economics at the University of Oxford. She has published in leading journals in Economics, Law, and Computer Science, and is on the editorial board of The Review of Economic Studies, one of the leading economics journals globally. She has raised over £2.5million in research funds for a range of projects on the impact of technology of work and the justice system, and on understanding gender inequality in the labour market and beyond. She was awarded the Economic & Social Research Council’s Outstanding Impact on Public Policy Prize and was selected as an initial leader of the Oxford Policy Engagement Network.

Alongside her University work, Abi is currently a Specialist Advisor to the UK Parliament Women & Equalities Select Committee and advises a range of stakeholders on empirical analysis relating to strategic litigation in the realm of public law and human rights.

Abi Adams_Prassl

Alex Teytelboym

Director of OUBEP

Alex Teytelboym is an Associate Professor in Economics within the Department of Economics in Oxford, a Tutorial Fellow at St Catherine’s College, and a Senior Research Fellow. At the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET) at the Oxford Martin School.

His main research interests lie within market design (e.g. matching markets and auctions) and network economics. He is interested in the applications of economic theory to many policy areas, including environment, energy and refugee resettlement.

Abi Adams_Prassl

Petr Sedlácek

Senior Tutor for OUBEP

Petr is a macroeconomist with a particular interest in the vast heterogeneity among workers and firms. He is fascinated by the question of how worker and firm heterogeneity interacts and how it shapes and is shaped by, the aggregate economy. His research combines empirical analysis of micro-level and aggregate data for macroeconomic questions and theoretical and quantitative models with heterogeneous agents.

Petr is the senior tutor for OUBEP and as such curates the academic programme and content for all seminars and the summer programme.

The Ultimate Leadership accelerator

Making up the foundation of the Oxford University Business Economics Programme, our intensive summer course is designed for the next generation of senior leaders. By combining high-calibre academic tuition, industry-leading keynote speakers, and a diverse group of delegates, the programme provides the opportunity to explore economic theory and applications to help solve problems and create strategic impact.

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Programme fees

Full Programme: £12,500.00 (Includes all lectures and accommodation costs)

Lectures only: £1,950.00

For more information email us: oubep@economics.ox.ac.uk 

The OUBEP summer school programme is facilitated by the Department of Economics