Economics 363 – Economic Growth

threeguysModigliani, Samuleson, and Solow

diamond-solow Solow and Diamond

This is a course in modern growth theory.  We will examine the quantitative and qualitative evidence used by economists and historians and develop a series of mathematical models.  Throughout this course I will emphasize the interactions among data, theory, and history in explaining economic growth.

Syllabus (REVISED VERSION) (Second revision due to snow day)

Class calendar

Literature review project


Readings (in order of classes where we used them)

Kuznets, “Modern Economic Growth: Findings and Reflections.”

Easterlin, “The Worldwide Standard of Living since 1800.”

Smith, “Escaping the National Middle-Income Trap.”

Jones and Klenow, “Beyond GDP? Welfare Across Countries and Time.”

Solow, “A Contribution to the Theory of Economic Growth.”

FRED Blog, “Negative Investment?

Jones and Vollrath – Chapter 2 problems

Solow, “Technical Change and the Aggregate Production Function.”

Field, “The Most Technologically Progressive Decade of the Century.

Johnston, Why the Great Recession was even worse than you thought.

Kendrick, Productivity Trends in the United States

Romer, “Why, Indeed, in America? Theory, History, and the Origins of Modern Economic Growth.”

Arrow and Debreu, “Existence of an Equilibrium for a Competitive Economy.”

Vollrath, Macroeconomic Theory notes

Solow, “The Economics of Resources or the Resources of Economics.”

Weil, “Overlapping Generations: The First Jubilee

Jones and Romer, “The New Kaldor Facts: Ideas, Institutions, Population, and Human Capital.”

Romer, “What Parts of Globalization Matter for Catch-Up Growth?”

Sokoloff and Engerman, “Institutions, Factor Endowments, and Paths of Development in the New World.”

Jones, et al, “Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find?”

Sachs, “Globalization and Patterns of Economic Development.”

Audio and Video

Practice problems

Exam 1: model answers score distribution

Exam 2: model answers score distribution



Goal 1: Students of economics will be able to apply economic theory to understand economic issues and policies by:

1.1: Analyzing interactions between human values and economic life;

1.2: Demonstrating a knowledge of and ability to apply appropriate analytical tools; and

1.3: Recognizing the diversity of methodologies practiced in conducting economic analysis.

Goal 2: Students of economics will be able to evaluate evidence bearing on those economic issues and policies by:

2.1: Identifying, locating, and assessing the necessary quantitative and non-quantitative information, facts and arguments; and

2.2: Employing both quantitative reasoning and computing skills where appropriate.

Goal 3: Students of economics will be able to communicate effectively the results of their economic analysis through:

3.1: Clear writing, appropriately supported and documented;

3.2: Effective participation in discussion; and

3.3: For majors, polished oral presentations.