96677 - Horticultural System Management and Economics

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

No poverty Zero hunger Good health and well-being Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

The course is aimed at providing the essential knowledge on the institutions, functions and mechanisms of interaction occurring in agricultural and food markets, as well as on marketing management practice and on performance measurement in agri-food businesses.

The objectives are to allow the student to be able to demonstrate: - an understanding of accounting; - proficiency in the analysis/interpretation of financial statements - capability in the analysis of financial performance of firms; - ability in the evaluation of capital investment projects.

The student learns the fundamentals for the analysis of the main features of agri-food markets (operators, relationships, functions, chains/networks, and institutions) and gets knowledge on methods useful to elaborating the marketing management’s strategies in agri-food companies.

Course contents

The course is organised in three modules.

  1. Business management, performance and decision taking - This module addresses the nature and purpose of a business, what a business seeks to achieve, how it is managed, the role of accounting for taking decisions and measuring performance. This module addresses the use of financial and non-financial performance measures. In particular, definition of performance, performance concept according to the various environments, performance and marketing, performance among the different operations, costs and break-even point, pricing and elasticity, target price and pricing strategies, intra- and inter-organizational management issues along the food chain from a corporate, trade and institutional perspective.
  2. Marketing management - This module explains the main concept of food marketing, including strategic planning, strategic marketing, operational marketing, pricing, distribution, communication, product.
  3. Budgeting and balance sheet - This module addresses the planning and budgeting practices, examines how management accounting serves the needs of short- and long-term decision making, with a special focus on capital budgeting and investment appraisal.


"Economics of Strategy" (International student version) by Besanko D., Dranove D., Shanley M., Schaefer, 6th Edition. Sections: Economics Primer (until pag. 23), Chapt. 3, 6, 8

"Preface to Marketing Management” by Peter Donnelly 14th edition, Mc Graw Hill, published in 2015. Chapters 1, 5, 6, 11

"Farm Management" (International student edition) by R.D. Kay, W.M. Edwards, P.A. Duffy, Mc Graw Hill, published in 2016. Chapters 4, 5

Teaching methods

The course is in English. During the lecture the teacher will provide case studies. Students will be asked to carry out a presentation as output of peers' research group activities on topics to be agreed with the Professor

Assessment methods

The assessment foresees a final oral examination in English. The final oral examination will focus on three questions to cover the whole programme developed during the lectures.

The assessment will take into consideration the competences and the skills developed by the students, the appropriateness of the language used during the oral examination, and the ability to discuss the possible interactions among the different issues developed during the course.

In-class presentations will be peer-reviewed by other students.

Teaching tools

Articles, seminars, external experts/speakers, discussion, presentation by students

Office hours

See the website of Antonella Samoggia