Energy Economics

Key Info

Basic Information

Organizational Unit:
Univ.-Prof. Dr. rer. soc. oec. Reinhard Madlener

Further Information



Since the end of the 19th century, the energy industry has become an increasingly important economic sector. An adequate supply of energy (e.g. electricity, natural gas or gasoline) at an acceptable price has become a vital necessity for the modern industrial society. Energy economics is a relatively young scientific discipline, which tries to investigate the energy industry with known and proven methods, but from new points of view. An important role is played by the coordination function of prices as well as the numerous peculiarities of energy markets. Rising energy prices, the threat to energy supply security due to scarcer or more expensive fossil fuels and the rapidly increasing energy consumption of countries such as China and India make this field of research just as interesting as the consequences of climate change, the (re-)regulation need due to the liberalization of energy markets and the often sluggish diffusion of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies. Comparatively good data availability and a high political and societal interest in changes in the energy markets also make the area extremely attractive for empirical research. Due to the increasing importance of the topic of energy in recent years, there is a growing need for social scientists, economists, (business) engineers, and natural scientists in business and administration to better understand the basic functioning and changes in energy markets and policies and to acquire suitable tools to analyze and better assess them in their daily work.

Teaching Objectives

  • Become familiar with the basic conditions and mechanisms to which decisions in energy economics and energy politicy actions are exposed.
  • Acquisition of basic knowledge of energy economics for theory-based and goal-oriented decisions on energy markets.
  • Acquisition of central insights into the significance and economic evaluation of conventional and alternative energy sources and carriers.
  • Become familiar with bottom-up and top-down analysis of energy demand.
  • Become familiar with key aspects of markets for solid, liquid, gas, new renewables, nuclear, electricity, and greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Grasping the importance of externalities and costs in the energy industry and the possibilities and strategies for internalization.
  • Joint analysis of the goals and implications of the energy transition as social and economic transformation processes.