These papers are normally taken as part of the 4th-year Honours, Postgraduate Diploma or Masters programmes. Note that not all papers may be taught in a given year. Student preferences and staff availability will be taken into account in determining which papers will be offered in any year.
ECON 402 Growth, Institutions and Development (Not offered in 2021)
This paper covers theories and evidence relating to the determinants of economic growth. The first part of the paper reviews alternative neoclassical growth theories, including the Overlapping Generations Model and the Ramsey-Cass-Koopmans Model, and uses them as a starting-point for the discussion of ‘endogenous’ growth theory. The second part of the paper examines the alternative empirical models that have been used to test hypotheses about the determinants of economic growth arising from the theoretical literature. By the end of the paper you should have enhanced your ability to understand and critically assess contemporary advanced theoretical and empirical models of economic growth.
ECON 403 Monetary Economics (S2)
Examines theoretical and empirical aspects of the role of money in the macroeconomy, New Classical and New Keynesian Economics and their implications for monetary policy.
ECON 404 International Economics (Not offered in 2021)
Covers advanced topics in international trade (including intermediate goods trade, inter-temporal trade, increasing returns and new trade theory) and open-economy macroeconomics (including empirical tests of PPP, exchange-rate and currency-crisis models).
ECON 405 Natural Resources and Public Choice (Not offered in 2021)
Natural Resource Economics (9 weeks) “Overwhelming environmental and resource problems now facing humanity are the result of economically rational individual decisions made every day by each and every one of us.” (C.W. Clark, Mathematical Bioeconomics, 2005, p.v). This section of the paper places emphasis on the bioeconomic principles underlying the exploitation of renewable resources (such as fisheries, wildlife products and forestries) and non-renewable resources (such as oil and minerals). The aim is to balance mathematical modelling with real world applications. The course shows how the insights we draw from theoretical models apply to precious natural resource issues, ranging from why New Zealand aspires to an emission trading scheme to whether jewelled geckos should be commercially traded.
The Economics of Collective Decision-Making (4 weeks) This section of the paper looks at empirical economic models of collective decision-making. We will see how economic theory can be applied to examine the ways in which societies resolve conflicting individual preferences. The main focus will be on (i) elections and voting behaviour and (ii) civil wars.
ECON 406 Labour and Population Economics (S2)
ECON 406 has three objectives.
The first objective is for students to learn about the fundamentals of good research and the econometric methods and empirical modelling strategies frequently used in applied microeconomic research. This will build upon what they have previously learned in more theoretically based econometrics classes and show them how empirical methods can be applied to learn about the world around us.
The second objective is for students to learn about how individuals and households make important life decisions, in particular: i) how much to invest in one’s own human capital, ii) how and whether to interact with the labour market, and iii) how to decide where to live and with whom to interact; and what impact these decisions have on one’s income, wealth, health, happiness and other measures of wellbeing. These are the core decisions studied in labour and population economics.
The third objective is for students to learn about both classic research papers of fundamental importance and recent cutting edge research on the topics discussed in the second objective. The course will discuss examples from both developed and developing countries to give students a well rounded introduction to the literature in this broad research area.
Overall, the objectives are meant to complement each other and both introduce students to some of the key research in a broad topic area and to get them to think about how to both evaluate other’s research and produce high quality research of their own.
ECON 407 Topics in Advanced Economics (S2)
Covers advanced topics in macro and/or micro economics.
ECON 410 Advanced Microeconomic Theory (S2)
Advanced analysis of microeconomic models of consumer choice, production theory, market equilibrium, and social choice and welfare.
This paper covers advanced theories relating to models of consumer choice, production theory, market equilibrium, and social choice and welfare. By the end of the paper you should have enhanced your ability to understand and critically assess contemporary advanced economic theory across a range of microeconomic topics.
ECON 411 Advanced Macroeconomic Theory (S1)
A modern approach to macroeconomic theory with an emphasis on the microeconomic foundation of macroeconomic models.
This paper covers advanced macroeconomic model with an emphasis on those based on microeconomic foundations. By the end of the paper you should have enhanced your ability to understand and critically assess contemporary advanced economic theory across a range of macroeconomic topics.
ECON 412 Macroeconometrics (S1)
Advanced time-series and nonstationary panel econometric techniques.
This paper examines aspects of time-series econometrics that have become widely used in the estimation and testing of macroeconomic relationships over the last 25 years. The objective of the paper is to develop an understanding of the econometric analysis of non-stationary data and the cointegration literature. At the end of the paper students should be able to interpret and critically evaluate applied time-series econometric studies in the literature, and to apply unit root testing and cointegration methods, using appropriate computer software, to relevant data in practice and interpret the results obtained.
ECON 413 Microeconometrics (S1)
Advanced cross-sectional and panel econometric techniques.
This paper provides students with practical experience of applying standard microeconometric techniques to large sample surveys. In particular topics covered will give students a familiarity with applied cross sectional and panel econometrics, instrumental variables, propensity score matching and regression discontinuity methods with a special focus on the interpretation of results. Throughout the module students will extensively use STATA econometric software.
ECON 480 Dissertation (Full Year)
A research dissertation of between 8,000 and 12,000 words.
The aim of the dissertation – expected to be 8000-12000 words long – is for students to gain experience in undertaking economic research. This experience includes: planning a significant research project; bringing relevant economic theory and/or data and/or quantitative techniques to bear on a carefully specified problem; working largely independently (with a supervisor); and presenting the results of the research in a clear and well-organised fashion, both in seminars and the dissertation itself.
ECON 485 Master's Thesis Preparation (S1, S2, FY)
Preparation of a thesis proposal/preliminary thesis research. Normally taken by students in the papers year for a Master's degree by papers and thesis.
This paper involves the preparation of a detailed research proposal – expected to be up to 4000 words long – suitable for a Master’s thesis. This involves selecting a carefully specified problem, critically reviewing the existing literature pertaining to that problem, identifying a significant gap in that literature and planning a research project that should be capable of adequately addressing that gap. Students will work independently under the guidance of a supervisor.
ECON 492 Dissertation for Philosophy, Politics and Economics (Full Year)
A research dissertation of between 15,000 and 20,000 words. Cross-disciplinary dissertation topics are encouraged.
Economics papers at other levels
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