• ECON 100: Revolution and Reform in Chinese Agriculture

    China’s incredible economic transformation and growth trajectory started simply, by most accounts, with a few carefully chosen modifications to the incentive structure faced by farmers. The move away from collective farming is credited with unleashing productivity forces well beyond initial expectations and paving the way for a continuing series of market-oriented reforms, first in the rural and later in the urban sector. What is less well known, however, is that China also experienced a short-lived farm production boost in an earlier era, shortly after formation of the People’s Republic of China. In contrast to the decentralization moves in the 1980s, rather the 1950s was characterized by gradual introduction of collective resource ownership and management, ultimately leading to commune style farming. We will draw from a variety of analytical sources, including economics, sociology, political science, anthropology, and history, to understand how China transformed itself twice, in opposite directions, exploring the impetuses behind these changes, their impacts, and their legacies.

    6 credits; Argument and Inquiry Seminar, Writing Requirement, International Studies; offered Fall 2021 · Denise Hare
  • ECON 110: Principles of Macroeconomics

    This course gives students a foundation in the general principles of economics as a basis for effective citizenship and, when combined with 111, as a preparation for all advanced study in economics. Topics include analysis of the measurement, level, and distribution of national income; the concepts of inflation and depression; the role and structure of the banking system; fiscal and monetary stabilization techniques; implications of and limits to economic growth; and international economic relations. 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022 · Yingtong Xie, Victor Almeida, Michael Hemesath, Nathan Grawe
  • ECON 111: Principles of Microeconomics

    This course gives the students a foundation in the general principles of economics as a basis for effective citizenship and, when combined with 110, as a preparation for all advanced study in economics. Topics include consumer choice theory; the formation of prices under competition, monopoly, and other market structures; the determination of wages, profits, and income from capital; the distribution of income; and an analysis of policy directed towards problems of public finance, pollution, natural resources, and public goods.

    6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022 · Aaron Swoboda, Prathi Seneviratne, Jonathan Lafky, Michael Hemesath, Faress Bhuiyan
  • ECON 201: Analysis of Microeconomic Development Models

    This course is the second part of a two-term winter break course sequence beginning with Economics 240. This course will focus on critically analyzing the appropriateness of modern microeconomic development models in the context of Bangladesh. Students exposed to various on-site visits and lectures in Bangladesh during the winter break will be required to research, write, and present their views on the reliability of different model assumptions and implications they studied in Economics 240.

    Prerequisites: Economics 111 and 240 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter, Writing Requirement, International Studies; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 210: AI and Economics

    Artificial Intelligence, as a practical endeavor, is the attempt to use computers to analyze data in a way that mimics or is superior to human comprehension. When successful, Artificial Intelligence allows the study of large datasets that would not be possible otherwise. These datasets open new possibilities to study social behavior by analyzing large amounts of transactions, social media, satellite images, phone locations, etc. The aim of this course is to introduce students to some of the tools of Artificial Intelligence that are emerging as useful for economists. The focus of the course will be introducing students to the practical application of such tools in the context of a modern programming language such as Python or R. It will center on a series of demonstration exercises using real data. These would provide a starting point for students who might want to use Artificial Intelligence in their own projects.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 3 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 221: Cambridge Program: Contemporary British Economy

    The course focuses on the development of the British economy since the inter-war period. The approach integrates economic and historical analysis to discuss the development of the structure of the British economy, economic policy, and the institutions affecting economic performance. Students majoring in economics, political science, and history are particularly encouraged to apply, but the seminar is open to students of all majors.

    Prerequisites: Students who have completed Economics 110 and 111 by the end of spring term 2022 are eligible to participate in the seminar. 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 222: Cambridge Program: The Industrial Revolution in Britain

    Economic growth only became an expected part of modern life during the Industrial Revolution. This course will explore the origins and implications of the Industrial Revolution in Britain.  Why did this revolution start in Britain?  How did it change life for British citizens, and how did the many changes move beyond Britain?  The course will use readings, lectures and visits to industrial sites and museums in and around Manchester. Students majoring in economics, political science, and history are particularly encouraged to apply, but the seminar is open to students of all majors.

    Prerequisites: Students who have completed Economics 110 and 111 by the end of spring term 2022 are eligible to participate in the seminar. not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 223: Cambridge Program: The Economics of Multinational Enterprises

    Among the most important economic institutions in the world today are multinational enterprises. This course will explore the theory and practice of MNEs. Lectures and reading will be supplemented with visits to British multinationals. Students majoring in economics, political science, and history are particularly encouraged to apply, but the seminar is open to students of all majors.

    Prerequisites: Students who have completed Economics 110 and 111 by the end of spring term 2022 are eligible to participate in the seminar. not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 224: Cambridge Program: J.M. Keynes and the Bloomsbury Group

    Britain has nurtured some of the most important economists in the world and Cambridge was the intellectual home of the foremost of these, J.M. Keynes. This course will explore the economic theory and social thought of Keynes and the influence of his contemporaries in the Bloomsbury group on post-WWI Britain. Students majoring in economics, political science, and history are particularly encouraged to apply, but the seminar is open to students of all majors.

    Prerequisites: Students who have completed Economics 110 and 111 by the end of spring term 2022 are eligible to participate in the seminar. not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 230: Politics & Pub Policy in Washington DC Program: Policy Analysis in Washington, DC

    Students will participate in a seminar centered around meetings with experts in areas of global and domestic politics and policy.  Over the course of the term they will collaborate in groups to produce a presentation exploring the economic dimensions of public policy with a focus on identifying the costs and benefits to the various stakeholder groups and the methods economists use to measure those impacts.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 or 111 and Statistics 120 (formerly Mathematics 215) or instructor consent 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Aaron Swoboda
  • ECON 233: World Economic History

    This course surveys world economic history from Paleolithic times to today. It helps students understand the fundamental forces that drive economic growth and living standards. We address questions such as: How did economic systems function during the ancient and medieval periods? What caused the Industrial Revolution, allowing billions of humans to escape the “Malthusian trap”? Why haven’t all countries experienced economic growth?  Finally, what lessons can we learn from the past to help us better understand what the future may hold? The course focuses on long-term trends, but we will also examine short-run cyclical phenomena such as financial crises.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Writing Requirement, International Studies, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 240: Microeconomics of Development

    This course explores household behavior in developing countries. We will cover areas including fertility decisions, health and mortality, investment in education, the intra-household allocation of resources, household structure, and the marriage market. We will also look at the characteristics of land, labor, and credit markets, particularly technology adoption; land tenure and tenancy arrangements; the role of agrarian institutions in the development process; and the impacts of alternative politics and strategies in developing countries. The course complements Economics 241. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter, International Studies; offered Winter 2022 · Faress Bhuiyan
  • ECON 241: Growth and Development

    Why are some countries rich and others poor? What causes countries to grow? This course develops a general framework of economic growth and development to analyze these questions. We will document the empirical differences in growth and development across countries and study some of the theories developed to explain these differences. This course complements Economics 240. Prerequisites: Economics 110 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter, International Studies; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 242: Economy of Latin America

    This course offers an introduction to the economy of Latin America. We will study the region’s policies undertaken during its colonial period and its development strategy during the twentieth century. Topics include import substitution industrialization, the 1980s debt crisis, hyperinflation, dollarization, and international trade agreements. Besides these experiences shared by many countries in Latin America, we will also analyze selected country-specific ones such as the Brazilian stabilization plans and the recent Argentine sovereign debt crisis.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, International Studies; offered Winter 2022 · Victor Almeida
  • ECON 243: Market Development and Policy Reform in China

    In the course of a few decades, China has launched itself from a poor country to a rising world power, at the same time substantially improving living standards and dramatically transforming its production base. What steps did China take to bring about these changes? We will examine China’s domestic economic reforms and development, considering the goals and impacts of various policy measures, along with on-going challenges. Topics to be considered include population, labor, income inequality, land, food production, industry, foreign relations, credit and financial markets, and the environment. While China will be our central focus, students will have some opportunities to compare and contrast with other country experiences.

    Prerequisites: Eonomics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Writing Requirement, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter, International Studies; offered Fall 2021 · Denise Hare
  • ECON 244: Gender, Race and Ethnicity in Latin American Economic Development

    Latin America has the highest level of inequality in the world, undergirded by significant racial, ethnic, and gender inequalities. This course will analyze key gender issues such as violence against women and women’s labor force participation. We will also examine issues affecting indigenous peoples from both a human capital and indigenous rights/development with identity framework. The focus will be on rigorous analysis to understand the problems and design better public policy.

    Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, International Studies; offered Spring 2022
  • ECON 257: Economics of Gender

    This course uses economic theory and empirical evidence to examine gender differentials in education, marriage, fertility, earnings, labor market participation, occupational choice, and household work. Trends and patterns in gender-based outcomes will be examined across time, across countries, and within socio-economic groups, using empirical evidence from both historical and recent research. The impact of government and firm policies on gender outcomes will also be examined. By the end of the course, students will be able to utilize the most common economic tools in the study of gender inequality, as well as understand their strengths and weaknesses.

    Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Prathi Seneviratne
  • ECON 262: The Economics of Sports

    In recent years, the sports business in the United States has grown into a multibillion-dollar industry. Understanding the sports business from an economic viewpoint is the subject of this course. Topics will include player compensation, revenue-sharing, salary caps, free agency, tournaments, salary discrimination, professional franchise valuation, league competitiveness, college athletics, and the economics of sports stadiums and arenas. Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 263: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Economic Performance

    Joseph Schumpeter, in lamenting the absence of an accepted theory of entrepreneurship, observed that this gap in economics is much like having Hamlet performed with the Prince of Denmark absent. Much has changed since Schumpeter leveled this criticism. Economics has embraced the contributions of entrepreneurs and provided theoretical models explaining their actions. This course explores the foundations of a microeconomic theory of entrepreneurship, investigating the role of entrepreneurs (and intrapreneurs within large organizations) as agents for change. Case studies of business development provide practical illustrations of ways in which entrepreneurs operate and how their efforts contribute to economic progress. Prerequisites: Economics 110 or 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 264: Health Care Economics

    This course will focus on the economics of medical care and how health care markets and systems work. We will consider both private health insurance markets and publicly provided social health insurance. The changes which demography, technology and the Affordable Health Care Act are bringing to health care delivery will be examined. Some time will be devoted to understanding the health care systems in other countries. This is a discussion course. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Nathan Grawe
  • ECON 265: Game Theory and Economic Applications

    Game theory is the study of purposeful behavior in strategic situations. It serves as a framework for analysis that can be applied to everyday decisions, such as working with a study group and cleaning your room, as well as to a variety of economic issues, including contract negotiations and firms’ output decisions. In this class, modern game theoretic tools will be primarily applied to economic situations, but we will also draw on examples from other realms. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Jonathan Lafky
  • ECON 267: Behavioral Economics

    This course introduces experimental economics and behavioral economics as two complementary approaches to understanding economic decision making. We will study the use of controlled experiments to test and critique economic theories, as well as how these theories can be improved by introducing psychologically plausible assumptions to our models. We will read a broad survey of experimental and behavioral results, including risk and time preferences, prospect theory, other-regarding preferences, the design of laboratory and field experiments, and biases in decision making.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Jonathan Lafky
  • ECON 268: Economics of Cost Benefit Analysis

    Cost-benefit analysis is a tool commonly used by economists and policy makers to compare and choose among competing policy options. This course will cover the basic theory and empirical techniques necessary to quantify and aggregate the impacts of government policy, especially as related to the environment. Topics covered include the time value of money; uncertainty; sensitivity analysis; option value; contingent valuation; hedonic estimation; basic research design. Throughout the course case studies will be used to elucidate and bring life to the theoretical concepts. Prerequisites: Economics 111. Some statistics background will be useful. 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Aaron Swoboda
  • ECON 270: Economics of the Public Sector

    This course provides a theoretical and empirical examination of the government’s role in the U.S. economy. Emphasis is placed on policy analysis using the criteria of efficiency and equity. Topics include rationales for government intervention; analysis of alternative public expenditure programs from a partial and/or general equilibrium framework; the incidence of various types of taxes; models of collective choice; cost-benefit analysis; intergovernmental fiscal relations. Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter, Writing Requirement; offered Spring 2022 · Jenny Bourne
  • ECON 271: Economics of Natural Resources and the Environment

    This course focuses on environmental economics, energy economics, and the relationship between them. Economic incentives for pollution abatement, the industrial organization of energy production, optimal depletion rates of energy sources, and the environmental and economic consequences of alternate energy sources are analyzed. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Mark Kanazawa
  • ECON 274: Labor Economics

    Why do some people choose to work and others do not? Why are some people paid higher wages than others? What are the economic benefits of education for the individual and for society? How do government policies, such as subsidized child care, the Earned Income Tax Credit and the income tax influence whether people work and the number of hours they choose to work? These are some of the questions examined in labor economics. This course will focus on the labor supply and human capital decisions of individuals and households. Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Faress Bhuiyan
  • ECON 275: Law and Economics

    Legal rules and institutions influence people’s behavior. By setting acceptable levels of pollution, structuring guidelines for contract negotiations, deciding who should pay for the costs of an accident, and determining punishment for crimes, courts and legislatures create incentives. How do economic considerations factor into legal rules, and how do laws affect economic output and distribution? In this class, we use court cases, experiments, and current legal controversies to explore such issues. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter, Writing Requirement; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 276: Money and Banking

    This course examines the role of money and monetary institutions in determination of income, employment, and prices in the domestic and world economies. It also examines the role of commercial banking and financial markets in a market-based economy. Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 277: History and Theory of Financial Crises

    This course provides a historical perspective on financial crises and highlights their main empirical patterns. This course also introduces economic theories of financial crises, in which leverage, moral hazard, mistaken beliefs, and coordination problems play a central role. We will also discuss some policy instruments used to balance risk exposure, such as deposit insurance, collective action clauses, exchange controls, and foreign reserves.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, International Studies; offered Spring 2022 · Victor Almeida
  • ECON 278: Industrial Organization and Firm Behavior

    This course analyzes the firm’s marketing and pricing problems, its conduct, and the resulting economic performance, given the nature of the demand for its products, its buying markets, the nature of its unit costs, and the structure of its selling markets. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Spring 2022 · Nathan Grawe
  • ECON 279: Technological Change and the Labor Market

    This course studies dynamics in domestic labor markets in the context of technological advancements. Topics are centered around the impact of different types of technological change, implications on productivity, and job polarization. To gauge the economy’s structural transformation due to adoption of new technologies, we explore rising levels of employment and income inequality, both from a theoretical and empirical perspective. These core subjects are accompanied by discussions on related phenomena, which shaped modern labor markets, such as immigration and institutional changes in form of unionization and minimum wages.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; not offered 2021–2022
  • ECON 280: International Trade

    A study of international trade theories and their policy implications. Classical and neo-classical trade models, the gains from trade, the terms of trade and the distribution of income, world trade patterns, international factor movements, tariffs, and the impact of commercial policy on developing and developed countries are analyzed. Prerequisites: Economics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Prathi Seneviratne
  • ECON 281: International Finance

    This course studies theories of the multi-faceted interaction between the balance of international payments and foreign exchange market and the general levels of domestic prices, employment and economic activity. Topics include the balance of payments, foreign exchange markets, adjustment mechanisms in international payments, macroeconomic policies for internal and external balance, and international monetary systems. Prerequisites: Economics 110 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Michael Hemesath
  • ECON 282: The Theory of Investment Finance

    This course provides an introduction to the main financial instruments that are used to fund economic activity. We will explore how investment products function and learn how to price a few of them. Attention will be given to the choices investors make, and should make, when allocating portfolios. Topics include bond pricing, stock pricing, option pricing, the mortgage market, hedge funds, private equity, optimal portfolios, defaults, financial intermediary capital, and investors’ behavioral biases.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Yingtong Xie
  • ECON 283: Corporate Organization and Finance

    This course investigates decision-making by firms and their managers. Specific topics include tradeoffs in corporate organization, executive compensation, project valuation, the cost of capital under debt and equity financing, and the firm’s optimal capital structure. 

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Spring 2022 · Yingtong Xie
  • ECON 293: Race and Inequality

    This course examines the empirical economics literature surrounding racial inequalities. Readings will be selected by students to reflect the dimensions of inequality of greatest interest but may include: employment, earnings, wealth, education, criminal justice, and family choices. Students will draw on these works in addition to theories of economic justice to devlop proposals for just policy reform.

    Prerequisites: Economics 110 & 111 and Economics 293 Theories of Economic Justice 2 credits; S/CR/NC; Social Inquiry, Writing Requirement; offered Spring 2022
  • ECON 329: Econometrics

    This course is an introduction to the statistical methods used by economists to test hypotheses and to study and quantify economic relationships. The course emphasizes both econometric theory and practical application through analysis of economic data sets using statistical software. Prior experience with R is strongly encouraged. Topics include two-variable and multiple regression, interval estimation and hypothesis testing, discrete and continuous structural change, parameter restrictions, model construction, experimental design, issues of functional specification, model overfitting and underfitting, heteroscedasticity, autocorrelation, and multicollinearity.

    Prerequisites: Mathematics 111 and either Statistics 120 (formerly Mathematics 215) or Statistics 250 (formerly Mathematics 275), and Economics 110 and 111 or instructor consent 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021, Spring 2022 · Mark Kanazawa
  • ECON 330: Intermediate Price Theory

    An analysis of the forces determining relative prices within the framework of production and distribution. This class is normally taken by juniors. Sophomores considering enrolling should speak to the instructor. Prerequisites: Economics 110 and 111 and Mathematics 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021, Winter 2022 · Jenny Bourne
  • ECON 331: Intermediate Macro Theory

    Analysis of the forces determining the general level of output, employment, and prices with special emphasis on the role of money and on interest rate determination. This class is normally taken by juniors. Sophomores considering enrolling should speak to the instructor. Prerequisites: Mathematics 111 and Statistics 120 (formerly Mathematics 215) or Statistics 250 (formerly Mathematics 275) or permission of the instructor and Economics 110 and 111 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022, Spring 2022 · Ethan Struby
  • ECON 395: Advanced Topics in Economic Development

    Students will be exposed to theoretical models of economic development both from a micro and a macro perspective. Econometric models including probits, logits, instrumental variables, ordered probits, and ordered logits will be applied to micro-level data to study theoretical models dealing with migration, poverty, inequality, nutrition, development program evaluation, and decision making in the context of developing countries. Economic development will also be explored from the perspective of the “growth literature” where macro level panel data will be explored using fixed-effects and random-effects panel regression models.

    Prerequisites: Economics 329, 330, and 331, or instructor permission 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Writing Requirement, International Studies, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Faress Bhuiyan
  • ECON 395: Advanced Topics in Labor Economics

    Labor economics is the study of work and pay. It encompasses a wide variety of topics, including the nature of the labor contract, human capital investment, fringe benefits, search and hiring, turnover, working conditions, discrimination, union activities, income and wealth distribution, and government policies. The seminar considers labor market activities within the larger context of general household decision-making about family formation, the timing of marriage and childbirth, and the allocation of unpaid household work among family members.

    Prerequisites: Economics 329, 330 and 331 or instructor permission 6 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement, Writing Requirement, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Fall 2021 · Jenny Bourne
  • ECON 395: Advanced Topics in Macroeconomics and Finance

    The seminar will explore contemporary approaches to the analysis of the macroeconomy and financial markets. Topics include tests of canonical, micro-founded models of household, investor, and firm behavior; the analysis of business cycles and the dynamic response of the macroeconomy to exogenous shocks; proximate and fundamental theories of long-run growth across countries; and the design and effects of stabilization policies. Students will also be exposed to empirical methods suited for the causal analysis of cross-sectional, time series, and panel data.

    Prerequisites: Economics 329, 330 and 331 or instructor consent 6 credits; Social Inquiry, Writing Requirement, Quantitative Reasoning Encounter; offered Winter 2022 · Ethan Struby
  • ECON 398: Advanced Research in Economics

    This course is designed to support majors in developing advanced skills in economic research and communication. Through a combination of class discussion, small group work, and/or one-on-one interactions with the professor, majors learn the process of constructing strong, theoretically-grounded arguments through primary research, secondary research, or both. Students will also learn and practice strategies for engaging critically with contemporary scholarship and effective techniques of peer review and the oral presentation of research.

    Prerequisites: Concurrent registration in Economics 400.; Economics 395 Instructor permission required 6 credits; S/CR/NC; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Winter 2022, Spring 2022 · Jenny Bourne, Faress Bhuiyan, Ethan Struby
  • ECON 400: Integrative Exercise

    3 credits; S/NC; offered Winter 2022, Spring 2022 · Jenny Bourne, Faress Bhuiyan, Ethan Struby