The study of economics investigates the consequences of scarcity, which forces people, organizations and governments to choose among competing objectives. Economics looks at these choices and how they affect the production of goods and services, market prices, national output, unemployment, inflation, economic growth and the use and distribution of resources within and across nations. Part of the social and behavioral sciences in the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, the economics program exposes students to macroeconomics, microeconomics, labor economics, the economics of industry, international finance, international trade and development, money and banking, the economics of government and public policy and econometrics.
- Bachelor of Arts with a major in economics
- Bachelor of Science with a major in economics
- Combined programs
Professors J.L. Gastwirth, A.M. Yezer, J.J. Cordes, J. Pelzman, B.L. Boulier, M.D. Bradley, S.C. Smith, P. Labadie, G.L. Kaminsky, D.O. Parsons, R.F. Phillips, M.O. Moore, N. Vonortas, F.L. Joutz, S. Joshi, A.S. Malik, J.E. Foster, V. Fon, A. Lusardi, B.R. Chiswick (Chair), B.S. Barnow, R. Van Order, J.C. Shambaugh
Associate Professors S.M. Suranovic, W.P. Mullin, R.M. Samaniego, C. Wei, M.X. Chen, T. Sinclair, A. Fostel, P. Carrilo
Assistant Professors I.R. Foster, E.W.K. Hovander, R. Fishman, T. Moore, R.C. Jedwab, O. Timoshenko, B.D. Williams
Professorial Lecturers S.N. Kirby, R.S. Belous, D. Fixler, H. Hertzfeld, H. Stekler, F.D. Weiss, L. Clauser, N. Pham
Explanation of Course Numbers
- Courses in the 1000s are primarily introductory undergraduate courses
- Those in the 2000–4000s are upper-division undergraduate courses that can also be taken for graduate credit with permission and additional work
- Those in the 6000s and 8000s are for master’s, doctoral, and professional-level students
- The 6000s are open to advanced undergraduate students with approval of the instructor and the dean or advising office
Courses at the 8000 level are specifically designed for economics graduate students and typically require knowledge of calculus and one or more of the core theory and econometrics courses. Less-well-prepared graduate students in other disciplines may register for 6000-level courses after having completed ECON 6217 Survey of Economics I–ECON 6218 Survey of Economics II, or ECON 6218 Survey of Economics II and ECON 6219 Managerial Economics, or ECON 2101 Intermediate Microeconomic Theory and ECON 2102 Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory, or ECON 2103 Intermediate Microeconomic Theory: A Mathematical Approach and ECON 2104 Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory: A Mathematical Approach, unless the course description indicates that these prerequisites have been waived. Intermediate-level micro and macro courses taken elsewhere usually satisfy this requirement, but introductory or first-year courses do not. Graduate students in economics can take 6000-level courses only with permission of their advisor.
ECON 1000. Dean's Seminar. 3 Credits.
The Dean’s Seminars provide Columbian College first-year students focused scholarship on specific intellectual challenges. Topics vary by semester. Consult the schedule of classes for more details. Restricted to First-year students in CCAS.
ECON 1011. Principles of Economics I. 3 Credits.
Major economic principles, institutions, and problems in contemporary life. Microeconomics—supply and demand, the price system and how it works, competitive and monopolistic markets.
ECON 1012. Principles of Economics II. 3 Credits.
Continuation of ECON 1011. Major economic principles, institutions, and problems in contemporary life. Macroeconomics—national income concepts, unemployment and inflation, institutions of monetary control. ECON 1011 is prerequisite to ECON 1012.
ECON 2101. Intermediate Microeconomic Theory. 3 Credits.
Analysis of household economic behavior, including derivation of demand functions. Analysis of firm behavior, including derivation of supply frameworks. Demand and supply interaction under various market structures and in factor markets. Prerequisites: ECON 1011, ECON 1012; MATH 1221, MATH 1231, or MATH 1252.
ECON 2102. Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory. 3 Credits.
Investigation of the determinants of national income, inflation, unemployment, and interest rates. Alternative business cycle theories, with emphasis on the role of imperfect information, uncertainty, and expectations. Prerequisites: ECON 1011, ECON 1012; MATH 1221, MATH 1231, or MATH 1252.
ECON 2103. Intermediate Microeconomic Theory: A Mathematical Approach. 3 Credits.
Analysis of household economic behavior, including derivation of demand functions, and of firm behavior, including derivation of supply frameworks. Demand and supply interaction under various market structures and in factor markets. Reliance on constrained and unconstrained optimization techniques when analyzing household and firm behavior. Corequisite: MATH 1232. Recommended for students pursuing the B.S. degree. Prerequisites: ECON 1011, ECON 1012; MATH 1221, MATH 1231, or MATH 1252.
ECON 2104. Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory: A Mathematical Approach. 3 Credits.
Development and application of mathematical models of aggregate economic behavior with a focus on the intertemporal choices made by households, firms, and governments. The use of rigorous economic analysis provides a deeper understanding of the determinants of the economy’s performance. Recommended for students pursuing the B.S. degree. Corequisite: MATH 1232 . Prerequisites: ECON 1011, ECON 1012; MATH 1221, MATH 1231, or MATH 1252.
ECON 2121. Financial Economics. 3 Credits.
Economic analysis of key financial institutions, markets, and variables. Investigation of the performance of asset markets and the roles of money, credit, interest rates, and exchange rates. Examination of private sector institutions like equity markets and the banking system and the roles of regulators like the Federal Reserve. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 2122. Monetary Theory and Policy. 3 Credits.
Analysis of classic and modern monetary theories and their application to current economic conditions. The links between theory and policy. The altered role of money over time; the new money technology. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 2123. Introduction to Econometrics. 3 Credits.
Joint offering of the Economics and Statistics Departments. Construction and testing of economic models: regression theory, parameter estimation, and statistical techniques applicable to economic models. Prerequisites: MATH 1221 or MATH 1231 or MATH 1252; STAT 1051 or STAT 1053 or STAT 1111. (Same as STAT 2123).
ECON 2136. Environmental and Natural Resource Economics. 3 Credits.
Analysis of a variety of environmental and natural resource problems. The economic causes of these problems, their consequences, and the relative merits of alternative policies for dealing with them. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 2148. Survey of Health Economics. 3 Credits.
Economic analysis of the determinants of demand, supply, output, and distribution in the health care sector, with special emphasis on current policy issues of access, quality, and cost. Credit may not be earned for both ECON 2148 and ECON 3148. Prerequisites: ECON 1011 - ECON 1012.
ECON 2151. Economic Development. 3 Credits.
ECON 2151W. Economic Development. 3 Credits.
ECON 2157. Urban and Regional Economics. 3 Credits.
ECON 2158. Industrial Organization. 3 Credits.
ECON 2159. Government Regulation of the Economy. 3 Credits.
ECON 2160. Surv:Finance&Engineering Econ. 3 Credits.
ECON 2167. Economics of Crime. 3 Credits.
Analysis of crime, both empirical and theoretical, that examines the links between law and economics, the economics of criminal participation, and the economics of law enforcement. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 2169. Introduction to the Economy of China. 3 Credits.
ECON 2170. Intro to the Economy of Japan. 3 Credits.
ECON 2180. Survey of International Economics. 0-3 Credits.
ECON 2181. International Trade Theory and Policy. 3 Credits.
The basis for international trade and the effect of trade on consumers, producers, and workers; the causes and effects of the international movement of factors including foreign direct investment, outsourcing, and migration; and the impacts of trade policies and trade agreements. Credit may not be earned for both ECON 2181 and ECON 3181. Prerequisites: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 2182. International Macroeconomic Theory and Policy. 3 Credits.
Topics include the balance of payments, the determination of exchange rates and prices in open economies, the interaction of the exchange rate and domestic economic activity, international financial markets, and exchange rate and financial crises. Prerequisites: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 2185. Economic History and Problems of Latin America. 3 Credits.
ECON 2195W. Special Topics. 3 Credits.
ECON 2198. Special Topics in Economics - Regional. 3 Credits.
ECON 2199. Special Topics in Economics. 3 Credits.
ECON 3098. Variable Topics-Regional Econ. 1-9 Credits.
ECON 3105. Economic Forecasting. 3 Credits.
ECON 3142. Labor Economics. 3 Credits.
Analysis of labor supply and demand; measurement and theory of unemployment; occupational choice; wage differentials; labor market issues and policies. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012 and ECON 2101 or ECON 2103.
ECON 3148. Health Economics. 3 Credits.
Analysis of economic theories and applications to the demand for and supply of healthcare. Examination of the role of government in health care, public health, and unhealthy behavior (e.g., smoking). Credit may not be earned for both ECON 2148 and ECON 3148. Prerequisites: ECON 2101 or ECON 2103.
ECON 3161. Public Finance: Expenditure Programs. 3 Credits.
Economic analysis of government spending and social regulation programs. Topics include public goods, externalities, income transfer and social insurance programs, and benefit–cost analysis of government programs. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012 and ECON 2101 or ECON 2103.
ECON 3162. Public Finance: Taxation. 3 Credits.
Economic analysis of taxes. Topics include individual and corporate income taxes, payroll taxes, sales and excise taxes, property and wealth taxes, design of tax systems, and effects of taxation on labor and capital markets. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012 and ECON 2101 or ECON 2103.
ECON 3165. Economics of Human Resources. 3 Credits.
ECON 3181. International Trade Theory. 3 Credits.
Rigorous examination of theories of international trade that explain why countries trade and their gains from trade. Theories include comparative advantage, the factor-proportions theory of trade, and recent theoretical developments. The course also deals with the theory of trade policies, such as tariffs and quotas. Credit cannot be earned for both ECON 2181 and ECON 3181. Prerequisites: ECON 2101 or ECON 2103; MATH 1221, MATH 1231, or MATH 1252.
ECON 3190. Law and Economics. 3 Credits.
An introduction to the economic analysis of legal systems. How laws alter behavior and how laws might be designed to satisfy efficiency and fairness criteria. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012 and ECON 2101 or ECON 2103.
ECON 3191. Game Theory. 3 Credits.
An introduction to game theory, covering concepts such as Nash equilibrium, evolutionary games, backward induction and subgame perfection, Bayesian–Nash games of imperfect information, adverse selection, and moral hazard. Prerequisites: ECON 1011– ECON 1012 and ECON 2101.
ECON 3198. Advanced Topics in Economics - Regional. 3 Credits.
Topics cover individual countries or regions of the world and vary depending on current issues of interest and faculty availability. Prerequisites: Depending on the topic: ECON 2101 (or ECON 2103) or ECON 2102 (or ECON (2104) or ECON 2123.
ECON 3199. Advanced Topics in Economics. 3 Credits.
ECON 3301. Money and Capital Markets. 3 Credits.
The process of capital formation in a free enterprise economy, with special emphasis on factors affecting the level and structure of interest rates. Money market, capital market, and derivative contracts (futures and swaps) are evaluated from both investment and financing perspectives.
ECON 4198W. Proseminar in Economics. 3 Credits.
Preparation and presentation of a research paper in any field of economics agreed upon by student and instructor. Restricted to Economics majors in their senior year. Recommended background: ECON 2101 or ECON 2103, ECON 2102 or ECON 2104, and STAT 2112 or ECON 2123.
ECON 4199. Independent Research-Economics. 3 Credits.
Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012 and completion of 12 hours of upper-division economics courses, including ECON 2101 or ECON 2103 and ECON 2102 or ECON 2104, with a minimum grade-point average of 3.4; and approval of an independent research project by a faculty member of the Economics Department.
ECON 6214. Survey of Mathematical Economics. 3 Credits.
For graduate students in fields other than economics. Differentiation, partial differentiation, and economic optimization problems; comparative statics; input–output analysis; difference, differential equations, and economic applications. Prerequisite: one semester of calculus and ECON 6217– ECON 6218.
ECON 6217. Survey of Economics I. 3 Credits.
Intermediate-level macroeconomic theory for graduate students in fields other than economics.
ECON 6218. Survey of Economics II. 3 Credits.
ECON 6219. Managerial Economics. 3 Credits.
Intermediate microeconomic theory, with emphasis on production and costs, market structure and pricing, risk analysis, and investment theory and capital budgeting. Credit can be earned for only one of ECON 6217 or ECON 6219.
ECON 6237. Economics of the Environment and Natural Resources. 3 Credits.
Analysis of public policy problems relating to the environment and natural resources development and management. Prerequisite: ECON 6217.
ECON 6239. Economics of Defense. 3 Credits.
Economic analysis applied to national security planning and objectives. Analysis of defense establishment problems, including manpower, the defense industry base, procurement policy.
ECON 6248. Health Economics. 3 Credits.
Demand for medical care; organization of the health care delivery industry; policy issues on regulation, efficiency, and allocation of health care services.
ECON 6249. Industrial Org-TComm Industry. 3 Credits.
ECON 6250. Survey of Economic Development. 3 Credits.
An introduction to economic problems faced by less developed countries. Emphasis placed on applications to policy-making and evaluation. Prerequisite: ECON 6217 or 6280 or equivalent.
ECON 6255. Economics of Technological Change. 3 Credits.
Economics of research and development; innovation and growth; the role of government in the development and use of new technology.
ECON 6269. Economy of China I. 3 Credits.
Analysis of organization, operation, policies, and problems. Development of the economy since 1949.
ECON 6270. Economy of China II. 3 Credits.
ECON 6271. Economy of Japan. 3 Credits.
Analysis of Japanese economic institutions and their contribution to Japan’s development.
ECON 6280. Survey of International Economics. 3 Credits.
Introductory-level international trade and finance, primarily for Elliott School students. Topics include the economic effects of trade liberalization and protection, exchange rate determination, and macroeconomic policies in an open economy. Prerequisite: ECON 1011– ECON 1012.
ECON 6283. Survey of International Trade Theory and Policy. 3 Credits.
For graduate students in fields other than economics. Survey of international economics and policy; application of comparative advantage and other arguments for trade; impact of trade on a domestic economy; new arguments for protectionism; regional trading blocs.
ECON 6284. Survey of International Macroeconomics and Finance Theory and Policy. 3 Credits.
For graduate students in fields other than economics. Open-economy macroeconomics; international finance; balance of payments accounting; exchange markets; alternative models of balance of payments determination and adjustment; behavior of flexible exchange rate systems.
ECON 6285. Economic Development of Latin America. 3 Credits.
Diversity of structures of Latin American economies; import substituting industrialization; inflation; problems of underemployment and income distribution.
ECON 6286. Economic Development of Latin America. 3 Credits.
Continuation of ECON 6285. Structure of trade; protection, exports, and economic development; regional and global economic integration; foreign investment, multinational enterprise, and technology transfer.
ECON 6290. Principles of Demography. 3 Credits.
Introduction to basic demographic perspectives and data; methods for analysis of population size, distribution, and composition; determinants and consequences of population trends. Departmental prerequisite waived. Same as GEOG 6290/ SOC 6290/ STAT 6290.
ECON 6291. Methods of Demographic Analysis. 3 Credits.
Basic methods for analysis of mortality, natality, and migration; population estimates and projections; estimation of demographic measures from incomplete data. Departmental prerequisite waived. Same as GEOG 6291/ SOC 6291/ STAT 6291.
ECON 6292. Topics in International Trade. 3 Credits.
Topics on international trade issues and policy. Primarily for master’s students in programs other than economics. May be repeated for credit if topic differs.
ECON 6293. Topics in International Finance. 3 Credits.
Topics on macroeconomic issues and policies in open economies, including exchange rate regimes, determinants of international capital flows, currency crises, financial contagion, current account sustainability and sovereign crises, fiscal problems, and macro-policies in emerging markets and mature economies.
ECON 6294. Topics in Economic Development. 3 Credits.
Topics on economic development issues and policy vary depending on faculty availability and interest. Primarily for master’s students in programs other than economics. May be repeated for credit if topic differs.
ECON 6295. Special Topics. 3 Credits.
Topics vary, depending on current issues of interest and faculty availability.
ECON 6298. Reading and Research. 3 Credits.
Limited to master’s degree candidates.
ECON 6997. Independent Research. 1-3 Credits.
This course is limited to master’s degree candidates in Economics. Before permission is granted to register for ECON 6997, the student must submit a written plan of study for the approval of the staff member of the department who will be directing the research. The written plan must also be approved by the program director. This course may be repeated once for credit but to no more than a total of 6 credits.
ECON 6998. Thesis Research. 3 Credits.
ECON 6999. Thesis Research. 3 Credits.
ECON 8301. Microeconomic Theory I. 3 Credits.
Theory of unconstrained optimization; optimization subject to equality and inequality constraints, along with applications. Profit maximization, utility maximization and cost minimization, concave and quasi-concave functions, monotone comparative statics, duality theory, the envelope theorem and Le Chatelier principle, and the Kuhn–Tucker conditions.
ECON 8302. Microeconomic Theory II. 3 Credits.
Expected utility theory, general equilibrium in a pure exchange economy and economy with production, welfare theorems and the core theory of the competitive firm in the short run and long run, monopoly and price discrimination, models of oligopoly. Prerequisite: ECON 8301.
ECON 8303. Microeconomic Theory III. 3 Credits.
Theory of games, including Nash equilibrium and its refinements and comparative statics, evolutionary game theory, multistage games and subgame perfection, repeated games and oligopolistic supergames, static and dynamic Bayesian games, auction theory, and bargaining theory. Prerequisite: ECON 8302.
ECON 8305. Macroeconomic Theory I. 3 Credits.
Alternative theories of income, employment, and the price level; impact of monetary and fiscal policy; role of expectations in the economy; and microfoundations of macroeconomic models and dynamic analysis.
ECON 8306. Macroeconomic Theory II. 3 Credits.
Extensions of alternative models of income determination, economic growth, and the application of analytical frameworks to the U.S. and international economies. Prerequisite: ECON 8305.
ECON 8307. Macroeconomic Theory III. 3 Credits.
Extensions to stochastic and dynamic general equilibrium frameworks, with emphasis on economic policy. Prerequisite: ECON 8306.
ECON 8323. Monetary Theory and Policy I. 3 Credits.
Theory of monetary policy within the framework of contemporary American central banking.
ECON 8324. Monetary Theory and Policy II. 3 Credits.
Continuation of ECON 8323. Theory of monetary policy within the framework of contemporary American central banking.
ECON 8337. Environmental Economics. 3 Credits.
ECON 8341. Labor Economics I. 3 Credits.
Theory of wages and employment, analysis of labor supply and demand. Analysis of unemployment; unions; wage regulation.
ECON 8342. Labor Economics II. 3 Credits.
Continuation of ECON 8341. Theory of wages and employment, analysis of labor supply and demand. Analysis of unemployment; unions; wage regulation.
ECON 8345. Industrial Organization I. 3 Credits.
Economic theory and evidence regarding industrial market structure, conduct, and economic performance.
ECON 8346. Industrial Organization II. 3 Credits.
Continuation of ECON 8345. Economic issues in antitrust and government regulation of the U.S. economy.
ECON 8351. Development Economics I. 3 Credits.
Major analytic concepts, measures, theoretical models, and empirical methods of development economics.
ECON 8352. Development Economics II. 3 Credits.
Continuation of ECON 8351. In-depth examination of special research topics with emphasis on methods in applied microeconomics.
ECON 8357. Regional Economics. 3 Credits.
Study of regional planning and growth models, including input–output, programming, and econometric models used by planning agencies; analysis of interregional production, trade, migration, firm location, and pricing models.
ECON 8358. Urban Economics. 3 Credits.
Analysis of spatial relationships among economic activities within an urban area including the urban land, labor, and housing markets; urban transportation models; fiscal relationships among jurisdictions.
ECON 8363. Public Finance I. 3 Credits.
Theoretical and empirical analysis of the economic role of the public sector and the effects of public expenditures on resource allocation and income distribution. Topics include public goods, externalities, social insurance, and benefit–cost analysis.
ECON 8364. Public Finance II. 3 Credits.
Theoretical and empirical analysis of the effects of taxes and transfers on the allocation of resources and income distribution. Topics include partial and general equilibrium models of tax incidence, effects of taxes on labor supply, saving, and portfolio choices of households and on investment and financing decisions of firms.
ECON 8375. Econometrics I. 3 Credits.
Statistical foundations for econometrics; standard methods of estimation and inference for classical and generalized regression models. Same as STAT 8375.
ECON 8376. Econometrics II. 3 Credits.
Topics may include asymptotic theory, statistical endogeneity, instrumental variables estimation, discrete and limited dependent variable models, and time–series models.Same as STAT 8376. Prerequisite: ECON 8375.
ECON 8377. Econometrics III. 3 Credits.
Econometric methods for systems of equations and panel data, with additional topics that may vary from year to year. Prerequisite: ECON 8376.
ECON 8378. Economic Forecasting. 3 Credits.
Introduction to the theoretical and applied aspects of economic forecasting. Topics include the role of forecasting, univariate time-series analysis, single equation models, multiple series models, and evaluation of forecasts. Prerequisite: ECON 8375 or permission of instructor.
ECON 8379. Laboratory in Applied Econometrics. 0-3 Credits.
Application of econometric theory and the use of econometric software; students are required to write an empirical research paper. The course usually deals exclusively with either micro or macroeconomic issues. May be repeated for credit provided the topic differs.
ECON 8381. International Trade Theory. 3 Credits.
International trade theory, including alternative models of the gains from trade and evaluations of the new justifications for protectionism, and analysis of commercial policy, factor flows, and trade and investment with multinational corporations. Prerequisite: most sections require calculus or permission of instructor.
ECON 8382. International Finance and Open-Economy Macroeconomics. 3 Credits.
International finance, including alternative models of balance of payments behavior and adjustment, payments accounting, exchange markets, and alternative exchange-rate regimes.
ECON 8383. International Financial Markets. 3 Credits.
Financial economics and international financial markets. Topics include standard asset pricing theory, uncertainty in open economy macroeconomics models, financial market micro-structure, and incomplete markets.
ECON 8395. Advanced Special Topics. 3 Credits.
Topics vary depending upon current interests and faculty availability. Open to graduate students in economics. May be repeated for credit.
ECON 8397. Dissertation Proposal Seminar. 3 Credits.
Limited to Doctor of Philosophy candidates in Unit II. Critical analysis of current research. Formulation of a dissertation proposal and development of dissertation research strategies.
ECON 8997. Independent Research. 3 Credits.
This course is limited to doctoral degree candidates in Economics. Departmental approval required to register. Before permission granted to register for ECON 8997, the student must submit a written plan of study for the approval of both the faculty member of the department who will be directing the research. And the Director of Graduate Studies for the PhD Program or the Department Chair. May be repeated for a total of 6 credits.
ECON 8998. Advanced Reading and Research. 1-12 Credits.
Limited to students preparing for the Doctor of Philosophy general examination. May be repeated for credit.
ECON 8999. Dissertation Research. 3-12 Credits.
Limited to Doctor of Philosophy candidates. May be repeated for credit.