ECO204: Principles of Microeconomics (BAK2220A)
Scarcity [WLOs: 1, 2] [CLOs: 1, 2, 4, 5]
Scarcity is the starting point for studying economics. Resources are limited, while human wants are unlimited. Prior to beginning work on this discussion, read Chelsea Follett’s article, Are Humans Prepared to Overcome Resource Scarcity in the Future? (Links to an external site.) as well as Chapter 1 Section 1.2 in your textbook, and respond to the following:
• Explain what resources are.
• Evaluate why current resource scarcity is problematic.
• What future problems would result from scarce resources?
• Do you agree or disagree, and why, with Chelsea Follett about overcoming future resource scarcity?
• Recommend one strategy to overcome present and future resource scarcity.
Coke Versus Pepsi [WLO: 4] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3]
Prior to beginning work on this discussion, read Chapter 3 in the textbook. A change in quantity demanded (or a movement along the demand curve) is caused by a change in its own price, while a change in demand (or a shift of the demand curve) is caused by a change in nonprice determinants that include changes in consumers’ income, taste or preference, price of other goods, expected future price, and so forth. Respond to the following:
• If Coke’s price increases, what will happen to the demand for Pepsi, all other things being equal?
• Explain whether it is a movement along the demand curve or a shift of the demand curve.
• If Coca-Cola develops a new technology that makes Coke tastier, what will happen to the supply curve and demand curve for Coke?
• Is the demand (curve or schedule) for Coke or Pepsi seasonally different?
• What is the relationship between Coke and Pepsi? Do they have the same demand curve or are they different? Explain your reasoning.
The Price Elasticity of Demand [WLOs: 1, 2] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3]
The price elasticity of demand is people’s responsiveness of quantity demanded (or consumption) when there is a change in price. Prior to beginning work on this discussion forum, read Chapter 4 of the textbook.
Respond to the following:
• Identify the determinants of the price elasticity of demand. Explain each one.
• Determine whether each of the following items is elastic or inelastic: bottled water, gourmet coffee, Apple cell phones, and gasoline. Explain your reasoning.
• Distinguish between a necessity and a luxury.
• How are the price elasticity of demand and total revenue related? Why is the price elasticity of demand important to pricing?
Externalities [WLO: 4] [CLOs: 1, 2, 4, 6, 7]
Externalities are costs or benefits associated with consumption or production that are not incurred by the consumer or producer and are therefore not reflected in market prices. The cost or benefit of an externality remains external when falling to parties other than the buyer or seller. Prior to beginning work on this discussion forum, read Chapter 6 of the textbook.
Respond to the following:
• Describe some differences between a positive externality and a negative externality.
• Provide one example of a positive externality and a negative externality, respectively. Explain your reasoning.
• How could you solve your examples of externalities to attain market efficiency?
• Does the government need to intervene with externalities to effect market efficiency?