Graduate Courses [Expand All]

Please consult the online course catalog for complete course information.

Course registration information can be found at

180.601 Microeconomic Theory

A systematic presentation of microeconomic theory in both its partial equilibrium and general equilibrium aspects. Topics covered include preferences and utility, exchange, production, theory of the firm, capital and interest, competition and monopoly, stability of equilibrium, and welfare economics.

Students enrolled in this course will complete the Senior Honors Thesis under the supervision of a thesis advisor (who will have been chosen by the student prior to registration for AS.180.521 ). The formal course instructor will be in charge of overseeing registration and submitting grades. He/she will also be available for discussions of progress or problems on the
thesis. Please note that your thesis advisor can be any faculty member in the Department or Economics, and need not be the same person as the course instructor. (This course cannot be counted as one of the 5 elective economics courses required for the Economics Major.)

Instructor: Khan

180.602 Microeconomic Theory

First term: a systematic presentation of microeconomic theory both its partial equilibrium and general equilibrium aspects. Topics covered will Include preferences and utility, exchange, production, theory of the firm, capital and Interest, competition and monopoly, stability or equilibrium, and welfare economics. Second term: a more intensive discussion of selected topics, emphasizing recent contributions.


AS 180.301-302, 110.106 or Perm Req'd

Instructor: Chen, Karni

180.603-604 Macroeconomic Theory

First term: a comprehensive treatment of macroeconomic theory, including static analysis of aggregate output employment, the rate of interest, and the price level; aggregative theory of investment, consumption, demand and supply of money; empirical work on aggregative relationships.

Second term: the macrodynamic theory of growth, cycles, unemployment and inflation, and selected subjects.


180.301-302 or permission of instructor.

Instructor: Carroll, Korinek

180.605-606 Advanced Macroeconomics

Topics of recent research in macroeconomics. Prof. Ball’s course covers nominal rigidities, dynamic-consistency theories of inflation, inflation inertia and the costs of disinflation, monetary policy, costs and benefits of price stability, benefits of output stabilization, alternative policy rules, measuring inflation, unemployment, efficiency-wage theories, the behavior of the NAIRU, macro in middle-income countries, high inflation and stabilization, currency crises. Prof. Carroll’s course analyzes implications of the buffer-stock and habit formation theories of consumption for comovement of aggregate variables and asset pricing. The models are applied to study the phenomena of declining U.S. saving rate, the dynamic relationship between saving rates and growth, and the equity premium puzzle.

Instructor: Ball, Carroll

180.607-608 Macroeconometrics

The course is an attempt to provide a framework for discussing the techniques that are used in macroeconometric analysis. Generally the bias that it has is one of looking at these from the perspective of someone analyzing macroeconomic data for policy analysis. Consequently, many of the applications considered are drawn from the type of research conducted in central banks and finance ministries. Its emphasis is therefore upon the issues raised by the analysis of time series of macro-economic data. Today there is an emerging literature that looks at microeconomic data as well as conducting cross-country studies. We will tend to ignore that material as the methods used in such research are essentially those of microeconometrics, although sometimes with adjustments made to reflect the nature of macroeconomic time series.

Instructor: Faust, Wright

180.611 Decision Theory

The course offers a review of alternative approaches to decision making under risk and under uncertainty. Starting with the subjective expected utility model, the course surveys axiomatic models that depart from the independence axiom under risk and the sure thing principle under uncertainty, exploring the notion of ambiguity and ambiguity aversion. Departures from the completeness of beliefs and tastes is also discussed and the representations of incomplete preferences under risk and uncertainty are examined.

Prerequisites: 180.601 and 180.603 or permission of instructor.

Instructor: Karni

180.614 Mathematical Economics

This course traces the extent to which modern economic theory, particularly as it pertains to pure competition in market and non-market games under the rationality postulate, is grounded in the language of probability and measure theory. Special attention will be paid to the formal expression of ideas such as economic and numerical negligibility, on the one hand, and diffuseness and conditional independence of information, on the other. Towards this end, the course will develop rigorous formulations of basic ideas of (conceptual rather than computational) probability and apply them: first, to develop the fundamental theorems of welfare economics, including the core theorems; and second, to large anonymous and non-anonymous games as well as to finite-agent games with private information. The course will be self-contained from the technical point of view but will presuppose a level of mathematical maturity that ought typically to be achieved by taking courses such as 180.615 and 180.601.

Instructor: Khan

180.616 Mathematical Methods in Economics

This course concerns dynamic optimization in both continuous and discrete time.  More specifically, it develops Pontryagin’s maximum principle and the Euler-Lagrange conditions in the calculus of variations,  on the one hand, and the basic tools of deterministic dynamic programming, on the other.  The course will be self-contained from the technical point of view but will presuppose a level of mathematical maturity that ought typically to be achieved by taking a course such as 180:615 and 180:601.


Instructor: Khan

180.618 Game Theory

This is a second-year doctoral course in game theory. The objective is to make sure that (1) students who plan to pursue applied research learn game theoretic tools well enough to fully understand the game theoretic arguments in the papers they read, identify problematic modeling techniques, build and solve their own models; (2) students who plan to pursue theoretical research in game theory get exposed to active research topics. The topics covered varies. Sample topics include repeated games, bargaining, voting, cheap talk, market microstructure, global games and network theory.



Instructor: Chen

180.628 Economic Development

A review of experience in less-developed countries (LDCs) since 1945, theories of development, economic planning in the LDC context, and models of the development process.

Prerequisites: 180.601, 180.603

Instructor: Gersovitz

180.632 Topics in Applied Microeconometrics

This course teaches methods for using micro-data to recover structural parameters of microeconomic models. We cover static models, but focus largely on single-agent dynamic programming, including “full solution” methods and innovations that permit circumvention of daunting computational tasks. Additional topics will be partially based on students’ interests, but will likely include: general equilibrium models, static and dynamic games, matching models, unobserved heterogeneity, structural methods with experimental data and biased expectations. The goal is to teach students to use structural methods in their own research, so we will delve into the nuts and bolts of structural work, examining how researchers actually get from raw data to results. This includes: how the subsample for analysis is chosen, how the model is specified, how the programming problem is solved, which moments are generated, how these are matched to the analogous moments in the data and, importantly, how identification is established.

Instructor: Papageorge

180.633 Econometrics

Mathematical models of economic behavior and the use of statistical methods for testing economic theories and estimating economic parameters. Subject matter will vary from year to year; statistical methods, such as linear regression, multivariate analysis, and identification, estimation and testing in simultaneous equation models, will be stressed.

Prerequisites: Statistics Inference(180.636), Microeconomic Theory (180.601), Mathematical Economics (180.614). People who wish to audit need the same prerequisites.

Instructor: Hu

180.636 Statistics

This course covers two broad topics, probability theory and statistical inference, as prerequisites for the subsequent econometric courses. For the first part, we introduce theories of measure and integration. For the second part, we discuss finite sample statistics, estimation, hypothesis testing, and asymptotic statistics. Examples are drawn from economics and econometrics. The course is limited to graduate students in economics.

Prerequisites: analysis and linear algebra.

Instructor: Sasaki

180.637 Microeconometrics I

This is an advanced graduate course on major econometric techniques and models that are used in empirical microeconomics. The first half of the course introduces econometric theories of nonlinear extremal estimation, nonparametric estimation, and semiparametric estimation. The second half of the course illustrates applications of these theories to limited dependent variable models, selection models, and endogenous treatment models with unobserved heterogeneity.

Prerequisites: Statistics Inference (180.636), Microeconomic Theory (180.601-602) and Econometrics (180.633)

Instructor: Sasaki

180.638 Microeconometrics II

The course is the second in the micro-econometrics sequence in the economics departments. It will introduce a selection of models and techniques that are useful when a researcher wants to estimate a structural model, i.e. a model derived from economic theory. Structural models that try to incorporate restrictions derived from economic theory are used in empirical IO, but also in quantitative marketing research, labor economics and other fields that consider individual decision making. No attempt will be made to be comprehensive.

Instead we will focus on a few areas that have been well-researched in recent years: dynamic discrete choice, microeconomic models with latent variables, program evaluation, the empirical analysis of auctions, nonseparable models. (some topics will be included only if time permits). The models and methods been developed for these areas are relevant for other cases. The emphasis is on the interaction between economic theory and econometrics. Basic issues are specification and (nonparametric) identification, computational problems and the use of simulation, semi-parametric estimation to avoid functional form and distributional assumptions that cannot be derived from economic theory.


Microeconomic Theory (180.601 or 180.602) and one of Statistics Inference (180.636), Econometrics (180.633), and Microeconometrics I (180.637) or permission by the instructor. People who wish to audit need the same prerequisites.

Instructor: Hu

180.641 International Trade

This is a graduate course in international trade. It will develop basic analytical tools and frameworks used in the general equilibrium analysis of international trade. Recent research topics will be discussed in the second half of the course.


Corequisites: 180.601, 180.603

Instructor: P. Krishna

180.642 International Monetary Economics

A link between the balance of payments and asset accumulation/decumulation, microeconomics of international finance and open-economy macroeconomics. The section on open-economy macroeconomics covers approaches to balance-of -payments adjustments, theories of exchange rate determination and monetary, fiscal and exchange-market policies under fixed and flexible rate regimes.

Prerequisites: Corequisites: 180.601, 180.603

Instructor: Jeanne

180.651 Labor Economics

First term: theories of the allocation of time and supply of labor, human capital, demand for labor, market equilibrium, and income distribution. As time allows, other topics, such as unemployment, unions, and compensating differences will be discussed.

Second term:
current topics in labor economics. The content will vary from year to year. Likely areas include nature vs. nurture in the determination of earnings, the function(s) of unions the question of the existence of dual labor markets, and internal markets with specific human capital.

Prerequisites: 180.601 Corequisite for 652: 180.633-634

Instructor: Moffitt

180.653 Numerical Methods in Economics

The course covers a set of numerical methods that are used to compute and estimate economic models. We focus on dynamic models and their applications in IO and labor economics, including dynamic discrete choice, dynamic games, two-step methods (CCP based methods), general equilibrium models. We also cover several technical tools, such as numerical integration, approximation, and optimization.

Instructor: Takahashi

180.662 Asset Pricing

This course is an introduction and guide to the most important issues in asset pricing.  It begins with classic concepts such as the Capital Asset Pricing Model and the Arbitrage Pricing Theory and continues through continuous-time dynamic no-arbitrage models.  It covers both basic theory and classic empirical research.

Instructor: Duffee

180.671-672 Industrial Organization

First term: This course covers methods in applied empirical Industrial Organization. The focus will be on the use of econometric analysis and data both for descriptive and measurement purposes, and to test the predictions of economic theories. The course will cover demand estimation, cost and production function estimation, and estimation of auction models.

Second term: The emphasis in this course is on empirical analysis of firm behavior. The first part of the course focuses on models of the internal organization of the firm. The second part considers empirical analysis of firm behavior in markets, with an emphasis on the “new industrial economics.”

Prerequisites: 180.601

Instructor: Balat, Krasnokutskaya

180.690 Advanced Econometrics in Empirical Economics

Advanced econometric techniques are often essential to innovative empirical work, but finding and implementing the right methods for a particular problem poses formidable challenges. This course/seminar aims to address these challenges by combining lectures and discussions of foundational econometric methods in areas of student interest (whether those interests be specific for thesis work or more speculative) with examples of implementation, including software development, in more of a ‘workshop’ environment. The emphasis will be on drawing on the resources of econometric theory to address specific empirical issues while at the same time developing implementation skills.

Instructor: Spady

180.694 Applied Microeoconomics Workshop

This is a weekly seminar series that brings in speakers from other universities to present their research in the field of applied microeconomics. Graduate Students only.

Instructor: Staff
Course Times: Wednesday 3:30-5:00

180.695 Microeconomic Theory Workshop

This is a seminar series devoted to the presentation of research in microeconomic theory, typically by speakers from outside the department. Graduate students only.

Instructor: Staff
Course Times: Monday 3:30-5:00

180.696 Macroeconomics Workshop

This course features lectures by macroeconomists from other universities. They present research findings at the frontier of the field. Graduate students only.

Instructor: Korinek
Course Times: Tuesday 3:30-5:00

180.697 Research Seminar

The purpose of this seminar is to train students to do research in economics. This course is for second year graduate students in the Ph.D. program in Economics. For Graduates Students Only.

Instructor: Duffee
Course Times: Friday 12:30-1:30

180.698 Research Practicum

The purpose of the Ph.D. program in economics is to train students to teach and to do research in economics. This course is for graduate students in the Ph.D. program in economics to obtain graduate credit for work off campus that provides training and the development of skills in teaching and/or research. Before the practicum is begun, the graduate student must identify a sponsoring faculty member or seek permission from their faculty adviser. The faculty member or adviser must sign a form that certifies that graduate credit will be granted, verifies the nature of the work to be performed by the student, and explains how the practicum helps to fulfill a degree requirement. Once completed, the sponsoring faculty member or adviser submits a grade of pass or fail for the student. The course may be used for curricular practical training. Economic majors /Graduate students only.

Instructor: Staff