Transport Economics MSc

The following modules are available in 2023/24 for Transport Economics MSc and are examples of the modules you are likely to study. All Modules are subject to change. You will study 180 credits in total. 

Compulsory modules

Shaping Future Transport Systems - 15 credits
The Shaping Transport Futures module will provide students with an understanding of the fundamental relationships involved in transport systems, their interactions with other sectors, and future opportunities and challenges. It will provide understanding of the case for interventions in managing transport systems. Students will be able to understand and contrast international approaches to transport planning and management and develop appreciation of the contribution of different roles in the delivery of transport sector implementations. Finally, students will be equipped with the fundamental techniques necessary to work in inter-disciplinary teams, which will prepare them for the Transport Integrated Project module delivered in the following semester

Principles of Transport Economics - 15 credits
Is the price right? How do we determine what the “right” price is in transport and how do we assess how close we are?

Welfare Economics and Cost-Benefit Analysis - 15 credits
Evaluating the welfare implications of projects and public policies is not an easy task. The Green Book and the Transport Appraisal Guidance provide substantial guidance for practitioners. In order to successfully and correctly apply these guidelines, a thorough understanding of the underlying concepts of welfare economics is required. The Welfare Economics and Cost-Benefit Analysis module provides the essential building blocks and methodologies underlying such exercises.

Transport Econometrics - 15 credits
This course will give the student the opportunity learn through a hands-on approach the use of econometrics in transport applications. After an introduction to the basic theory, which does require a need for matrix algebra, the lectures will make use of transport examples to demonstrate the various topics covered by the syllabus. The students will be provided with data to analyse in practicals and as coursework.

Economics of Regulation - 15 credits
This course aims to provide students with a thorough understanding of the costs and benefits of alternative approaches to correcting market failure in respect of public utilities, such as in the transport sector (a variety of modes will be explored). Consideration will be given to theoretical contributions and empirical evidence. The course will focus on UK examples, but will also consider international evidence where appropriate to draw out important similarities and differences with the UK case. The question of how best to regulate and involve the private sector notably in the public utilities, transport, continues to be a major issue in the UK and internationally. In the UK and elsewhere, the public utilities are the source of considerable employment opportunities for micro economists, either directly in the regulation departments of the firms themselves, or indirectly through employment at the industry regulators, relevant government department and consultancy firms.

Economic Appraisal and Economic Performance - 15 credits
This advanced economics module will provide students with the opportunity to study the latest developments in economic appraisal, focusing on the key theoretical innovations and their application. Students will learn about the economic analysis underpinning the evaluation of major infrastructure projects such as HS2 and Crossrail, urban realm improvements, active travel measures which impact public health and a range of other interventions which test the boundaries of current methods.

Transport Dissertation - 60 credits
The Transport Dissertation module gives you the opportunity to develop and apply research and/or design skills in a specialist topic within the transport discipline. You’ll develop an in-depth knowledge of your chosen subject area and demonstrate your findings in a 15,000-word report.

Transport Integrated Project - 15 credits
This module will be run in the second semester and aims to enhance a range of personal and professional related skills (technical applied transport skills and project management skills) by placing students in a multi-disciplinary project group (to reflect the range of transport masters programmes) and asking them to undertake a specific transport project as suggested by a client (an external organisation or ITS). 


Optional modules

Green Logistics - 15 credits
The module re-appraises supply chain logistics using the latest thinking and endeavours to offer possibilities to reduce the environmental impact.

Public Transport Planning and Management - 15 credits
To ensure that students have a sound understanding of the key issues affecting the planning, management and financing of public transport in developed and developing countries.

System Dynamics: Modelling Policy - 15 credits
This module develops an understanding of the structure and dynamics of complex systems and how systems dynamics models can be used to address systems problems primarily in the field of transport. Students will learn how to apply causal loop techniques enabling them to communicate ideas and model structures effectively. 

Choice Modelling and Stated Preference Survey Design - 15 credits
Choice modelling techniques are used widely to produce insights into choice behaviour, often with a view to providing guidance to policy makers, e.g. as an input to cost-benefit analyses. The models can be estimated either on data containing real observed choices, or data collected in hypothetical choice scenarios. The latter approach, known as stated preference data, is widespread and an appealing solution in cases where data on real choices are difficult to obtain, for example when looking at behaviour in the presence of a new transport mode. This course covers the essential principles involved in the specification, estimation and interpretation of choice models, covering topics from basic structures right through to state-of-the-art techniques. Similarly, the course covers different available techniques for generating designs for stated preference surveys, and also addresses the topics of data collection.

Transport in Development - 15 credits
This module provides a broad outline of the role of transport mobilities in development. Over the course of the module we will become more familiar with the economic, financial, institutional and demographic characteristics of developing countries and their significance for transport sector policies and technical practices. We will examine development policy in developing countries and its interaction with transport policy and explore the applicability and transferability of policy approaches, analytical tools and techniques to different economic, institutional and social contexts.

More information for this course is available in the course catalogue.