Graduate Field Concentrations


The concentrations in Economics are listed below in alphabetical order. After each concentration, there is a list of courses that students often take for that concentration. There is one extremely important caveat: the exact courses required to meet a particular concentration are determined by a student’s special committee and not by the field or DGS. Any member of the special committee may require additional or different courses as a condition of representing a particular concentration on a committee. This is why you cannot pick concentration courses independently from the selection of a special committee. That said, taking courses in your intended concentrations is one time-tested way of selecting special committee members. New concentrations under consideration by the field are listed next. Finally there is an incomplete list of concentrations in other fields that have been historically part of some Economics committees as minor concentrations.

The Graduate School’s official list of faculty and concentrations in Economics is here. This should correspond to the choices offered online in the Student Center. Faculty or students who find discrepancies should notify the DGS and GFA in Economics. The chair of a special committee in Economics must be a member of the graduate faculty in the Field of Economics and must represent a concentration from the official graduate school list for Economics. Be careful when selecting a special committee chair in the online Student Center to choose the field of Economics and a concentration from the Economics list. Many faculty members belong to multiple fields. A member of the graduate faculty who belongs to fields in addition to Economics may represent another field and a concentration from that field on an Economics committee as long as that person is not the special committee chair. Always consult with the potential committee member in advance of selecting such an option.

The field-maintained list of members is here. Research interests shown on this page do not correspond exactly to the official graduate school concentrations. They are intended to guide students to faculty members with appropriate research specializations.

Applied Economics

This is a catch-all concentration generally used when there are two members of a committee representing the same concentration (not allowed by the Graduate School on three-person committees) so that both can be officially recorded on the committee. The other uses of this concentration include specializations that have formal course sequences but are not designated as official concentrations (e.g., behavioral economics and the economics of education) and concentrations outside of economics where the committee member still wants to be shown in the field of economics (e.g., a member of the field of economics who is also a member of the field of management may represent “Applied Economics” on the committee or a concentration in management, according to the wishes of the student and the committee). A committee member representing “Applied Economics” could require any of the courses listed under any concentration or other courses not listed here.

Econometrics and Economic Statistics

In addition to econometrics classes, courses in computational and statistical methods have been collected into this section. See below for additional information about the Computer Science minor concentration.

Theoretical econometrics

  • Econ 7190 Advanced Topics in Econometrics I (Spring 2013, Kiefer)
  • Econ 7200 Advanced Topics in Econometrics II (Spring 2013, Hong)
  • Econ 7230 Semi/Non Parametric Econometrics (not offered 2012-2013, Molinari)

Applied econometrics

  • PAM 6090/Econ 6590 Empirical Research Methods I (Fall 2012, Matsudaira)
  • PAM 6091 Empirical Research Methods II (Spring 2013, Clark)
  • Econ 7480 Applied Econometrics I (Fall 2012, Jakubson)
  • Econ 7492 Applied Econometrics II (Spring 2013, Jakubson)
  • Econ 7120 Decision Making Uncertainty: Empirics (Spring 2013, Barseghyan)

Other econometrics sequences

  • AEM 7100 Econometrics I (Spring 2013, tentative)
  • AEM 7110 Econometrics II (not offered 2012-2013)

Computational methods

  • ORIE 5340/CS 5722 Heuristic Methods for Optimization (Fall 2012, C. Shoemaker)
  • ORIE 5630 Computational Methods in Finance (Fall 2012, S. Stoikov)
  • CS 6220 Data-sparse Matrix Computations (Fall 2013, C. Van Loan)
  • Econ 7760 Computational Economics (Spring 2013, Tsyrennikov)

Related information science courses

  • INFO 7470/Econ 7400 Social and Economic Data (Spring 2013, Abowd)

Economic Development & Planning

Economic development and related courses are offered around the university by faculty in the fields of Economics, Applied Economics and Management, Developmental Sociology, Nutritional Science, and others. Selected courses are listed below. They may be taken in any order.

  • AEM 6670/Econ 7700 Topics in Development Economics (Spring 2014, Kanbur)
  • AEM 7350/Econ 7350 Topics in Public Economics (Spring 2014, Kanbur)
  • AEM 7620 Microeconomics of International Development (Fall 2013, Barrett)
  • AEM 7650 Development Microeconomics Graduate Research Seminar (Fall 2012, Barrett; Spring 2013, TBA)
  • Econ 7711/NS 6850 Empirical Methods for the Analysis of Household Survey Data: Applications to Nutrition, Health, and Poverty (Spring 2013, Sahn)
  • Econ 7720 Economics of Development (Spring 2013, Fields) Note: this class may be taken before or after Econ 7730.
  • Econ 7730 Economic Development (Fall 2012, Basu) Note: this class may be taken before or after Econ 7720.
  • AEM 7670/Econ 7670 Topics in International Finance (Fall 2012, Prasad)

Economics of Education

These courses may be taken in any order.

  • Econ 7470 Economics of Education I (Spring 2013, Ehrenberg, tentative)
  • ILRLE 7471/PAM 6471 Economics of Education II (not offered 2012-2013; Fall 2013, Lovenheim)

Economic History

Make special arrangements with Profs. George Boyer, Sean Nicholson or Eleanor Wilking; currently the only members of the field who will represent an economic history concentration.

Economic Theory

  • NRE 5030/Econ 6110 Microeconomic Theory III/Game Theory and Applications (Spring 2014, Waldman)
  • Econ 6180 Intermediate Mathematical Economics II (Spring 2013, Mitra, tentative)
  • Econ 6760/CS 5846 Decision Theory I (Fall 2013, staff)
  • Econ 6770/CS 5847 Decision Theory II (Spring 2014, staff)
  • CS 6840 Algorithmic Game Theory (Spring 2014, E. Tardos)
  • CS 6850 The Structure of Information Networks (offered 2013-2014, J. Kleinberg)
  • Econ 7170 Mathematical Economics (Fall 2012, Majumdar)
  • Econ 7180 Topics in Mathematical Economics (not offered 2012-2013. This is a special topics course in economics—not always theory—with a variety of instructors. Students should contact the listed instructor and request a syllabus before enrolling.)
  • Econ 7560 Non-cooperative Game Theory (not offered 2012-2013, Blume)
  • Econ 7570 Economics of Imperfect Information (Fall 2013, Majumdar, Easley)
  • Econ 7740 Contract Theory (Spring 2014, Bodoh-Creed)

Health Economics

  • PAM 6410/Econ 6410 Health Economics I (Fall 2012, Cawley)
  • PAM 6420/Econ 6420 Health Economics II (Spring 2013, Ziebarth)

Further information can be found here.

Industrial Organization & Control

Attention: There is only one Ph.D. level course in Industrial Organization planned for the 2102-2013 academic year. Students planning to concentrate in this area should contact one of the field members who represent that concentration to arrange an individual reading class. The Economics Department has hired a new faculty member in this area, Matthew Backus, but he will not be starting at Cornell until the 2013-2014 academic year. Current field members who may represent Industrial Organization on a committee include Profs. Levon Barseghyan, Aaron Bodoh-Creed, Murillo Campello, Michael Frakes, Justin Johnson, Vrinda Kadiyali, Shanjun Li, Claire Lim, Rob Masson, Alan Mathios, Ted O'Donoghue, Henry Schneider, William Schulze, Sharon Tennyson, and Mike Waldman.

Students planning to do industrial organization as a concentration are strongly advised to take the Applied Econometrics course sequence (Econ 7480 and 7492) during the second year.

  • NRE 5440 Empirical Methods in Dynamic Industrial Organization (not offered 2012-2013)
  • Econ 7120 Decision Making Uncertainty: Empirics (Spring 2013, Barseghyan)
  • Econ 7510 Industrial Organization and Regulation I (not offered 2012-2013)
  • Econ 7520 Industrial Organization and Regulation II (not offered 2012-2013)

International Economics

  • Econ 7620 International Economics: International Finance and Open Economy Macroeconomics (Fall 2012, Razin)
  • Econ 7640 International Trade and Foreign Investment (Spring 2012, Razin)
  • AEM 7670/Econ 7670 Topics in International Finance (Fall 2012, Prasad)

Labor Economics

  • Econ 7420 Seminar in Labor Economics I (Fall 2012, Mansfield/Prowse)
  • Econ 7430 Seminar in Labor Economics II (Spring 2013, Freedman/Kahn)

Monetary & Macroeconomics

  • Econ 7310 Monetary Economics I (Fall 2012, Shell)
  • Econ 7320 Monetary Economics II (Fall 2013, Shell, tentative)
  • Econ 7620 International Economics: International Finance and Open Economy Macroeconomics (Fall 2012, Razin)
  • AEM 7670/Econ 7670 Topics in International Finance (Fall 2012, Prasad)

Public Finance

  • AM 6970/Econ 6970 Empirical Public Finance and Taxation (not offered 2011-2012, Lovenheim)
  • AEM 7350/Econ 7350 Topics in Public Economics (Spring 2014, Kanbur)
  • Econ 7360 Public Finance: Resource Allocation and Fiscal Policy (Fall 2012, Coate)
  • Econ 7380 Public Choice (Fall 2013, Coate)
  • Econ 7390 Advanced Topics in Public Finance (Fall 2012, Troshkin)

Unofficial Concentrations

Behavioral Economics

A proposal to create a concentration in behavioral economics is under development. It has not yet been discussed or approved by the field or Graduate School.

  • NRE 5340 Doctoral Seminar in Behavioral Finance (not offered 2012-2013, Huang)
  • Econ 7120 Decision Making Uncertainty: Empirics (Spring 2013, Barseghyan)
  • Econ 7580 Behavioral Economics I (not offered 2012-2013, O’Donoghue)
  • Econ 7585 Behavioral Economics II (Fall 2012, Benjamin) Note that Behavioral Economics I is not a prerequisite for this course. The courses in behavioral economics may be taken in any order.

Selected Concentrations Outside the Field of Economics

The concentrations and fields listed here are selected from the hundreds of offerings by the graduate faculty at Cornell. The courses listed are the ones taught by members of the field of Economics who are also members of the field offering the concentration and selected others who have served regularly on Economics Ph.D. committees.

Field: AEM; Concentrations: Environmental Economics, Resource Economics

  • AEM 7500 - Resource Economics (Fall 2012, Conrad)
  • AEM 7510 - Environmental Economics (Spring 2013, Bento)

Field: AEM; Concentration: Finance

  • AEM 6940 Graduate Special Topics in Applied Economics and Management: Topics in Empirical Finance (Fall 2012, Ng)

Field: Demography; Concentration: Minor only

  • PAM 6280 Family Demography (Fall 2012, K. Musick)
  • PAM 6720/DSOC 6720 Demography Pro-Seminar (Fall 2012, Williams)

Field: PAM; Applied Economics (any concentration)

  • PAM 6370 Microeconomics for Policy Analysis (Fall 2012, Fitzpatrick)

Field: Management; Concentration: Finance

Each of the following courses is offered every other year by the faculty member shown in parentheses. Students preparing for the management field’s finance concentration take all seven and a qualifying exam in their third year.

  • NRE 5340 Doctoral Seminar in Behavioral Finance (not offered 2012-2013, Huang)
  • NRE 5360 Doctoral Seminar – Introduction to Asset Pricing Theory (Fall 2012, Huang)
  • NRE 5020 PhD Seminar – Market Microstructure (not offered 2012-2013, O’Hara/Saar)
  • NRE 5060 PhD Seminar in Corporate Finance Theory (not offered 2012-2013, Grinstein)
  • NRE 5280 PhD Seminar in Empirical Asset Pricing (Fall 2012, Gao)
  • NRE 5110 PhD Seminar in Empirical Corporate Finance (Fall 2012, Campello)
  • NRE 5270 Doctoral Seminar – International Finance (Spring 2013, Bailey)

Field: Computer Science; Concentration: Minor

Any member of the graduated field of Computer Science may serve on an economics committee representing Computer Science as a minor concentration. Normally, that person will require at least four graduate CS courses for the minor. Any course labeled CS above would count. In addition, students may wish to consider the following courses.

  • CS 6110 Advanced Programming Languages (Spring 2013, staff)
  • CS 6210 Matrix Computations (Fall 2012, D. Bindel)
  • CS 6700 Advanced Artificial Intelligence (Spring 2013, staff)
  • CS 6702/INFO 6702 Topics in Computational Sustainability (Spring 2013, staff)
  • CS 6766 Reasoning about Uncertainty (Spring 2013, staff)
  • CS 6820 Analysis of Algorithms (Fall 2012, R. Kleinberg)
  • CS 7810 Advanced Computational Complexity (Spring 2013, staff)