There are three things one can do in this website - 1. Learn 2. Help Teach 3. Sign up MOOC. This is a semester-long graduate course in Econometrics. This course is intended for graduate students in economics-related fields and more generally in social sciences. The course includes an overview of the models and theory and applications using Stata, R, or SAS programs. This econometrics class covers about 15 of the most commonly used econometric models in economics, such as linear regression, panel data models, probit and logit models, limited dependent variable models, count data models, time series models, and many more.
This syllabus provides an overview of the contents of the course "Understanding Economic Models" at the University of Helsinki.
This article considers the strengths of agent-based modelling and the ways that it can be used to help central banks understand the economy. These models provide a complement to more traditional economic modelling which has been criticised in the wake of the Great Recession.
Homo Economicus: Why are new year’s resolutions so difficult to maintain and economic models so bad at predicting our behaviour?
Have you ever wondered why it is so difficult to follow through on new year’s resolutions, such as to exercise more or to start saving more money towards retirement? The agent that most traditional economic models are based on would not struggle to keep up these resolutions. These agents are referred to as homo economicus.
An essay of the writing workshop on contemporary issues in the field of Nigerian economics: Labour and all the dynamics, such as laws, mobility, gender participation, regulation etc., that are associated with it cements the need for this paper which seeks to objectively review, analyse, and if deemed necessary, give plausible recommendations.
Michael Kalecki famously remarked “I have found out what economics is; it is the science of confusing stocks with flows”. Stock-Flow Consistent (SFC) models were developed precisely to address this kind of confusion. The basic intuition of SFC models is that the economy is built up as a set of intersecting balance sheets, where transactions between entities are called flows and the value of the assets/liabilities they hold are called stocks. Wages are a flow; bank deposits are a stock, and confusing the two directly is a category error. In this edition of the pluralist showcase I will first describe the logic of SFC models – which is worth exploring in depth – before discussing empirical calibration and applications of the models. Warning that there is a little more maths in this post than usual (i.e. some), but you should be able to skip those parts and still easily get the picture.
This collection of previously published and new papers is a major intervention in the on-going debate about the nature and future of economics. Instead of the present deductivist-formalist orientation of mainstream economics, Lars Syll advocates for the adoption of a more pluralist approach to economics, arguing for more realism and relevance with less insistence on mathematical modeling.
From the two premises that (1) economies are complex systems and (2) the accumulation of knowledge about reality is desirable, I derive the conclusion that pluralism with regard to economic research programs is a more viable position to hold than monism. To substantiate this claim an epistemological framework of how scholars study their objects of inquiry and relate their models to reality is discussed. Furthermore, it is argued that given the current institutions of our scientific system, economics self-organizes towards a state of scientific unity. Since such a state is epistemologically inferior to a state of plurality, critical intervention is desirable.
Complexity economics focuses on interactions and interdependencies between individuals and structures in economic systems. Those are systems of organised complexity. High importance is given to the analysis of networks.
Post-Keynesians focus on the analysis of capitalist economies, perceived as highly productive, but unstable and conflictive systems. Economic activity is determined by effective demand, which is typically insufficient to generate full employment and full utilisation of capacity.
Based on a critique on econometric and DSGE models (in particular in the context of the financial crisis), Doyne Farmer presents his current research programme that aims at building an agent-based model of the financial and economic crisis. It models heterogeneous agents and from there simulates the economy, firstly for the housing market. The interview gives a short insight in the research programme.
In the keynote speech, Sigrid Stagl argues why it is necessary to include socio-ecological aspects in macoreconomic models. The talk focuses on the ecological necessities, mentioning limits to growth, resource extraction and planetary boundaries. At the end, Stagl shortly presents several current macroeconomic initiatives and models that move towards a a socio-ecological macroeconomics.
As opposed to the conventional over-simplified assumption of self-interested individuals, strong evidence points towards the presence of heterogeneous other-regarding preferences in agents. Incorporating social preferences – specifically, trust and reciprocity - and recognizing the non-constancy of these preferences across individuals can help models better represent the reality.
One method of economic modelling that has become increasingly popular in academia, government and the private sector is Agent Based Models, or ABM. These simulate the actions and interactions of thousands or even millions of people to try to understand the economy – for this reason ABM was once described to me as being “like Sim City without the graphics”. One advantage of ABM is that it is flexible, since you can choose how many agents there are (an agent just means some kind of 'economic decision maker' like a firm, consumer, worker or government); how they behave (do they use complicated or simple rules to make decisions?); as well as the environment they act in, then just run the simulation and see what happens as they interact over time.
The notion that the demand and supply side are independent is a key feature of textbook undergraduate economics and of modern macroeconomic models. Economic output is thought to be constrained by the productive capabilities of the economy - the ‘supply-side' - through technology, demographics and capital investment. In the short run a boost in demand may increase GDP and employment due to frictions such as sticky wages, but over the long-term successive rises in demand without corresponding improvements on the supply side can only create inflation as the economy reaches capacity. In this post I will explore the alternative idea of demand-led growth, where an increase in demand can translate into long-run supply side gains. This theory is most commonly associated with post-Keynesian economics, though it has been increasingly recognised in the mainstream literature.
This is a new online course at bachelor level. It presents an introduction into macroeconomics with a specific focus on the euro area. The theoretical part provides a critical presentation of the two key macroeconomic models: the (neo)classical approach and the Keynesian approach. This allows a comparative analysis of important macroeconomic topics: unemployment inflation government debt and Modern Monetary Theory banks and financial crises. The policy-oriented part discusses the monetary policy of the ECB and the specific challenges for fiscal policy in the euro area. The course also presents other euro area specific topics: Optimum currency area, euro crises, Next Generation EU and Green New Deal.
What influence do changes in tax policy or state decisions on expenditure have on economic growth? For decades, this question has been controversially debated.
How do people make decisions? There is a class of models in psychology which seek to answer this question but have received scant attention in economics despite some clear empirical successes. In a previous post I discussed one of these, Decision by Sampling, and this post will look at another: the so-called Fast and Frugal heuristics pioneered by the German psychologist Gerd Gigerenzer. Here the individual seeks out sufficient information to make a reasonable decision. They are ‘fast’ because they do not require massive computational effort to make a decision so can be done in seconds, and they are ‘frugal’ because they use as little information as possible to make the decision effectively.
If there’s one method economists have neglected the most, it’s qualitative research. Whereas economists favour mathematical models and statistics, qualitative research seeks to understand the world through intensive investigation of particular circumstances, which usually entails interviewing people directly about their experiences. While this may sound simple to quantitative types the style, purpose, context, and interpretation of an interview can vary widely. Because of this variety, I have written a longer post than usual on this topic rather than doing it a disservice. Having said that, examples of qualitative research in economics are sadly scant enough that it doesn’t warrant multiple posts. In this post I will introduce qualitative research in general with nods to several applications including the study of firm behaviour, race, Austrian economics, and health economics. More than usual I will utilise block quotes, which I feel is in the spirit of the topic.
Maria Nikolaidi on how Minsky’s theory has been modelled over past decades and how one can use these models in order to analyse contemporary issues such as financial fragility and financial instability caused by climate change.
What data is used in the economic models of the IPCC? How problematic is it, that tipping points are often ignored? A very interesting presentation by Steve Keen during the OECD Conference "Averting Systemic Collapse".
Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations provided the first, most influential and lasting explanation of the workings of modern economics. But with his focus on "the market" as the best mechanism for producing and distributing the necessities of life, Smith's concepts only told part of the story, leading to flawed economic models that devalue activities that fall outside of the market's parameters of buying and selling.
The models of portfolio selection and asset price dynamics in this volume seek to explain the market dynamics of asset prices. Presenting a range of analytical, empirical, and numerical techniques as well as several different modeling approaches, the authors depict the state of debate on the market selection hypothesis.
Neoclassical economics focuses on the allocation of scarce resources. Economic analysis is mainly concerned with determining the efficient allocation of resources in order to increase welfare.
In a span of around 12 weeks, the course covers a wide range of topics including agent-based modeling, networks, dynamic, chaos, information, fractals, cooperation models and scaling in biology and society. The course acts as a perfect beginner level introduction spanning a wide range of topics in the field of complexity.
This is the first intermediate microeconomics textbook to offer both a theoretical and real-world grounding in the subject. Relying on simple algebraic equations, and developed over years of classroom testing, it covers factually oriented models in addition to the neoclassical paradigm, and goes beyond theoretical analysis to consider practical realities.
This book presents recent thought on market efficiency, using a complex systems approach to move past equilibrium models and quantify the actual efficiency of markets.
The economic crisis is also a crisis for economic theory. Most analyses of the evolution of the crisis invoke three themes, contagion, networks and trust, yet none of these play a major role in standard macroeconomic models. What is needed is a theory in which these aspects are central.
This book tells the story of the search for disequilibrium micro-foundations for macroeconomic theory, from the disequilibrium theories of Patinkin, Clower and Leijonhufvud to recent dynamic stochastic general equilibrium models with imperfect competition.
Derek Neal writes that economists must analyze public education policy in the same way they analyze other procurement problems. He shows how standard tools from economics research speak directly to issues in education. For mastering the models and tools that economists of education should use in their work, there is no better resource available.--
The book provides an excellent comparative perspective on New Keynesian "New Consensus" economics and Post-Keynesian Economics at a beginner level. It also offers an interactive tool to understand how the economic models work, especially from a heterodox / pluralist perspective.
Renowned scholars elaborate a critique on neoclassical economics and how it was unable to predict and even favoured the financial crisis. They refer to DSGE models, equilibrium theory and rational agents – a brief insight in the critique on neoclassic economics.