First Year Courses

Winter Term

During winter term of the first year, doctoral students will take the following core courses:

Preparatory Math Course

The Preparatory Math Course provides the general background in mathematics and statistics necessary for the first year courses and for research related work in economics in general. It is aimed to give a brief overview of the main concepts and methods used in economics research. Topics include calculus, analysis, matrix algebra, probability, statistics and others.Outline

Textbooks: Chiang & Wainwright (2005), De la Fuente (2000), Hamilton (1994, Appendix), Judge, Hill, Griths, Lutkepohl & Lee (1988), Lucas, Stokey & Prescott (1989, Chapter 3), Mas-Colell, Whinston & Green, (1995, Appendix), Simon & Blume (1994)

Advanced Microeconomics

Advanced Microeconomics deepens modern duality concepts in the analysis of consumer and producer behavior and welfare economics as well as many game theoretic concepts and links them to market analysis (incomplete competition), market design (auctions), markets under incomplete information (moral hazard, adverse selection), and elaborates on microeconomic decision theory (dynamic programming, decision under uncertainty, etc.).

Textbook: Mas-Colell, A., M. Whinston and J. Green, "Microeconomic Theory"

Econometrics I

Econometrics I Part I covers commonly used estimation techniques, such as Ordinary Least Squares, Maximum Likelihood, Generalized Least Squares, etc. The Generalized Method of Moments framework is introduced and several popular estimators (IV, 2SLS, 3SLS, FE, RE) are derived from it. Econometrics I Part II provides a survey of the theory of time series methods in econometrics. Topics include univariate stationary and non-stationary models, vector autoregressions, cointegration and volatility models.  Asymptotic properties of estimators are an integral part of the course and are derived throughout the lectures.

Textbooks Part I: Hayashi, F. "Econometrics", Greene, W., "Econometric Analysis", Judge, G. et al. "Introduction to the Theory and Practice of Econometrics". Part II: Hamilton, J.D., “Time Series Analysis”, Lütkepohl, H. “New Introduction to Multiple Time Series Analysis”

Advanced Macroeconomics

Advanced Macroeconomics addresses recent developments in macroeconomic theory including monetary and international economics and models for endogenous growth. Special focus is given to dynamic optimization.

Textbooks: Ljungqvist, L. and T. Sargent, "Recursive Macroeconomic Theory"
Gali, J., "New Perspectives on Monetary Policy, Inflation, and the Business Cycle"
Gali, J. and P. Rabanal, "Technology Shocks and Aggregate Fluctuations: How Well Does the Real Business Cycle Model Fit Postwar U.S. Data?"

Economic Policy

The Economic Policy course is presented by DIW researchers from different departments and serves to introduce the students to the institute’s research areas. It includes theory lessons as well as practical hand-on sessions, for example in SOEP data analysis. All students are requested to attend this course.
In the future, the Economic Policy course will be scheduled for the third semester.

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Summer Term

In the second term, students must take Econometrics II and choose at least two electives from the following list of courses.

Econometrics II

This course provides a rigorous review of basic linear regression and techniques both for cross-sectional and panel applications. The course then covers further topics which are important in applied econometric analysis based on individual level data and longitudinal data. These topics include a discussion of the asymptotic theory for nonlinear estimation techniques (MLE, Nonlinear Least Squares), discrete choice models, limited dependent variables models, and linear quantile regressions. The course provides an up-to-date treatment at the level of Wooldridge's textbook on “Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data”. The course will regularly discuss the causal interpretation of econometric estimates. The focus of the course is both on understanding the methodological concepts and on how to apply them. Students will learn to implement the estimation methods using the econometric package Stata.

Textbooks: Wooldridge, J. M. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data", Angrist, J. D. and J.-S. Pischke "Mostly Harmless Econometrics – An Empiricist’s Companion", Cameron, A. C. and P. K. Trivedi "Microeconometrics – Methods and Applications"

Two Elective Courses

Students choose two additional courses out of the broad programs offered by the three cooperating universities in Berlin. The courses must be at master or doctoral level and fit well to the students' research interests. Whether the courses of your choice qualify to be part of the GC curriculum depends on their academic level, the specific course syllabuses and your motivation. All BDPEMS-courses automatically qualify for the GC program.


Internships at high-level political or research institutions in Germany and abroad allow students to develop an in-depth, practical understanding of what it means to work in applied economic research. These internships can be with institutions anywhere in the world and should last between 6 and 26 weeks. They can also be conducted during later years. For international internships, the Graduate Center may provide financial support to cover travel and living expenses.

Recently, students did their internships at institutions like the IMF, World Bank, OECD, ECB or the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

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