ECO 495 - Senior Session
Required of all seniors majoring in economics. Students participate in colloquia on economic problems, theory, and policy; prepare projects on economic issues; and take comprehensive examinations that include the ETS Major Field Test in economics, an oral exam and written examinations in economic theory and analysis.
Prerequisites: Economics 202, 203, and 205 or permission of the instructor.
Group Projects: One part of the Senior Session experience requires each student to participate in a group project. Each student should register in one of six group projects described below. Space in each section is limited.
SPRING 2018 GROUPS
ECO 495A: TAX SYSTEM DESIGN FOR PERU
GROUP ADVISOR: BAKER
Students will have the opportunity to develop a system of taxation for a country. You will start with a clean slate. It is incumbent upon your group to design a system of taxation that you feel is equitable and has a realistic chance of functioning. You will use Peru as your subject country. You have been hired as consultants by the Peruvian government to propose a revised system of taxation. You will research the country to learn about its history, culture, national budgets/priorities, and economy. You will determine the level of funding needed by the country to meet the goals established by its government. You will research various systems of taxation from which you can choose.
ECO 495B: FOOD AID- DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE TO THE POOR OR EXPORT PROMOTION FOR THE RICH?
GROUP ADVISOR: JHA
Since the end of World War II, food aid has been a key element of development assistance policy for major donor countries like the United States. This group will assess the efficacy of major food aid programs: Have food aid programs, such as PL480, been successful at alleviating food shortages in poor countries, or have they been a tool to foster commercial food exports of donor countries? Further, we will explore the impact of food aid on recipients’ agricultural development and food security.
ECO 495C: THE FIRST GLOBALIZATION- 1870-1914
GROUP ADVISOR: KUMAR
The period 1870-1914, often called the Belle Époque, is widely considered to be the first era of globalization. Working in groups of three or four, students will consider key economic attributes that defined this so-called ‘Beautiful Era.’ They will examine the economic, socio-political forces that re-shaped the world order, including international movements of populations, finance and commodities, technological change, industrialization, urbanization, and the emergence of labor union movements.
ECO 495D: GLOBALIZATION TODAY
GROUP ADVISOR: KUMAR
The financial crisis and the ensuing great recession have presented the most serious challenge to the rapid pace of globalization that began around 1980. Working in groups of three or four, students will examine the extent to which the policy environment of the great moderation, the Washington consensus and multilateral institutions, and the information technology revolution, created new opportunities for worldwide prosperity and poverty reduction, as well as new economic risks, and economic and social divisions.
ECO 495E: INEQUALITY
GROUP ADVISOR: ROSS
This group will assess degrees of income inequality in the United States with particular attention to hourly wages, household income, and wealth. The measurement and extent of absolute poverty will also be a topic of consideration. Differentials by race and gender, as well as mobility across the income distribution will be studied. The degree and change of inequality over the last decades will be a focus of the group’s work. Finally, we will address policy considerations relating to inequality.
ECO 495F: SIX GREAT IDEAS IN ECONOMICS
GROUP ADVISOR: ROSS
In fall 2017, The Economist offered a series of six articles highlighting some seminal academic work in economics over prior years, primarily but not exclusively in the 20th century. These included works by Ronald Coase, Gary Becker, Jean-Baptiste Say, Arthur Pigou, macroeconomists concerned with the natural rate of unemployment, and experts of intergenerational economic considerations. Working in groups of two (if possible), students will review these contributions, assess the importance of these contributions, and elaborate on their enduring relevance to economic policy.
Prerequisites & Notes
Economics 202, 203, and 205 or permission of the instructor.
[Add to Portfolio]