PED-101: Economic Development: Theory and Evidence

Semester: Fall

Credit: 4.0

Syllabus: Click here for syllabus


Day Time Location
Term Start Date 8/31
Meet Day M/W 8:45 AM - 10:00 AM Littauer Bldg 140 (HKS)


PED-101 is a semester-long course that evaluates theories of economic (under)development and scrutinizes empirical evidence in order to understand key features of the development process across countries. To do so, the course will utilize analytical frameworks, grounded in economic theory, that examine the determinants of factor accumulation by individuals, firms and societies. Drawing on empirical evidence on individual and societal behavior, we will evaluate the relevance of these frameworks for diagnosing root causes of economic development. The course has three broad sections: (i) Analytical frameworks for understanding proximate determinants of economic growth and factor accumulation; (ii) Individual determinants and returns to investment in human capital (health and education), financial capital (credit markets, savings behavior) and the role of behavioral economics,  culture and governance systems in affecting individual investments; and (iii) resource misallocation, learning and coordination and their impacts on productivity; the role of industrialization and growth diagnostics. In the Spring, PED 102 will use these frameworks to examine the design of development policies.

This course is open to MPA/ID students. Others by permission of the instructors only. Also offered by the Economics Department as Ec 2326.

Students must attend one of the following review sessions: Friday 1:15-2:30pm (Land) OR Friday 2:45-4:00pm (Land)

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