Electives (Summer Term)

The Masters in Political Economy Program will offer the following elective courses in the Summer term of the Program in Washington D.C. at Georgetown University.

ECON-562 Industrial Organization

This course is a survey of modern economic analysis of industrial organization with emphasis on both theory and empirical applications. Topics that will be covered include theory of the firm, transaction cost economics, contract theory, static analysis of imperfect competition, dynamic competition and collusion, antitrust, entry and entry deterrence, product differentiation, price discrimination, incomplete information, bargaining and auctions. This is a hands-on course, and students will critically review the theoretical and empirical literature for in- class presentation and active discussion. 

ECON-563 Public Economics 

This course focuses mainly on public sector taxation and expenditures. It encompasses normative and positive theories of public economics and a broad range of empirical work. The course uses a well-known textbook in public economics. In addition, optional readings from the economics literature will be assigned every week. A series of problem sets using publicly available data and a major econometric software package will be assigned. A major empirical project will constitute a large portion of the grade

ECON-564 Environmental Economics  

This course focuses on the application of economic concepts and methods to environmental issues, both in theory and in practice. The environment is strongly connected to the economy both as a source of inputs to the production of manufactured goods and as a sink for pollution from economic activities. Many environmental resources also serve as inputs to the “production” of human health and other aspects of overall well-being. However, most environmental resources are not privately owned and are typically not exchanged in traditional markets. This can lead to an over-production of pollution, over-extraction of nonrenewable resources, such as fossil fuels, and over-exploitation of renewable resources, such as fish or other wildlife species. In this course, students will learn how to design policies that can correct such market failures and improve environmental quality, human health, and economic efficiency. 

ECON-566 Health Economics

This course is an introduction to the field of health economics, covering both theory and empirical research. It begins with a discussion of the importance of health care to the economy and how health care differs from other goods and services. It will cover the human capital model of health, the determinants of health, health insurance and its associated market failures, comparisons of international health-care systems, the US system, recent health-care reform attempts such as the Affordable Care Act, provider (physician and hospital) behavior and industries, the pharmaceutical industry, and concludes with a discussion of how to measure the return to health-care spending.

ECON-569 Energy Economics and Policy

The energy industry is inextricably linked to political and regulatory systems that collectively identify and implement the government objectives for the energy industry, including economic incentives for investment and regulatory oversight and compliance. This course aims to develop an understanding of the economic fundamentals of traditional fossil fuels, power and renewables and emerging technologies, which are all going through substantial transformations. The course will develop an understanding of the influence of energy policies on the energy industry and detail the recent changes in policies and implications. This course will also provide an overview of regulatory systems that implement the energy policies and address the significance of geopolitical and energy security. This course will demonstrate the importance of the energy industry to the economy, energy infrastructure developments and energy and the environment considerations. The course will provide the U.S. perspective as well as selected discussions from other countries, Asia, Europe and others, to understand the global nature of the energy industry. The course will equip the students with the necessary skillset to critically think about our current and prospective energy industry, the economy and the environment.

ECON-571 Financial Economics

In the last decades the financial world has seen a tremendous evolution in investments and trading strategies. Finance is the backbone of our everyday life and still answers to basic principles despite newly designed elaborate securities and trading strategies: interest rates and rates of return when considering a loan or investing in the stock or bond markets, riskiness of assets such as stocks, bonds and loans and most profitable portfolio allocation, as well as valuation of corporations. This course explores issues that multinational firms face and how they make domestic and international financial decisions. It focuses on investment decision rules, with the different types of rates, risk and cost of capital, and market efficiency among other topics. Given the importance of international finance, key topics include  foreign exchange exposure, foreign direct investment decisions, multinational capital budgeting and cash management, and international banking and alternatives for international financing. 

ECON-579 Open Economy Macroeconomics

This course focuses on applying empirical and theoretical techniques used in international economics and macroeconomics to current academic and policy issues. The course is geared toward sharpening the skills of students who wish to proceed from the master's program to economic analyst employment in either the private or public sectors.  In this course, we read academic journal articles and other materials, primarily studies from central banks such as the Federal Reserve and European Central Bank.  The primary objectives are assisting students in developing a facility with economic data; becoming knowledgeable about current issues in international economic policy; and providing them with actual research training befitting a high-quality economics professional.

Elective courses are generally taught by economists who work in government, international organizations, think tanks, consulting firms or other research positions in the Washington, D.C. area. These faculty members are highly experienced professionals who have deep expertise in the substantive areas in which they offer courses.

The elective courses typically entail textbook readings, readings from professional and academic journals, review of policy papers, and significant empirical work.

Electives (Spring Term)  Admissions