Development Economics

This information is for the 2013/14 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Gregory Fischer

Dr Garhad Bryan 32L3.10


This course is available on the BSc in Econometrics and Mathematical Economics, BSc in Economics, BSc in Economics and Economic History, BSc in Economics with Economic History, BSc in Geography with Economics, BSc in Government and Economics, BSc in Philosophy and Economics and BSc in Social Policy and Economics. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit and to General Course students.


Students must have completed Introduction to Econometrics (EC220), Macroeconomic Principles (EC210) and Microeconomic Principles I (EC201).

Students should have completed Microeconomic Principles I or II (or equivalent) and Macroeconomic Principles (or equivalent). A knowledge of introductory econometrics such as that provided by Introduction to Econometrics is also necessary given the strong applied forms of the course

Course content

The course provides an introduction to selected issues in economic development including theory, evidence and policy. The course will explore the related themes of Economic Growth and Development. The course begins by analysing the growth performance of different countries and by presenting the main growth theories to the purpose of identifying, both theoretically and empirically, the determinants of economic growth. The course will then analyse economic institutions in developing countries focusing around the themes of ''Markets, Institutions and Welfare'' and "Public Policy and Welfare". Failures in key markets such as those for land, labour, credit and insurance have far reaching implications both for productive efficiency and welfare. The story of economic development is, in many ways, one of how informal, imaginative institutions have evolved to fill the gaps left by these market failures. The course will study how institutions have evolved to cope with missing markets, and how they affect the allocation and the distribution of resources. The course will analyse both the channel through which the institutional environment affects efficiency and welfare and how public policy can be designed to increase welfare and growth. The course has a strong applied focus. Under each section we want to derive testable implications from the theory, subject these to econometric testing, comment on the robustness of the results obtained and draw out policy conclusions.


15 hours of lectures and 9 hours of classes in the MT. 15 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the LT. 1 hour of classes in the ST.

Indicative reading

Teaching in the course will be done mainly from journal articles drawn from the forefront of theoretical and applied research in development economics. The main textbooks for the course are A. Banerjee and E. Duflo, Poor Economics, Public Affairs, 2011 and D. Ray, Development Economics, Princeton UP, 1998. Use will also be made of three other reference texts: (i) C Jones, Introduction to Economic Growth, Norton, 1998; (ii) A Deaton, The Analysis of Household Surveys: A Microeconometric Approach to Development Policy, John Hopkins UP, 1997 and (iii) J Behrman & T N Srinivasan (Eds), Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier, 1995. Students less familiar with econometrics should review C Dougherty, Introductory Econometrics, OUP, 1992.


Exam (100%, duration: 3 hours) in the main exam period.

Key facts

Department: Economics

Total students 2012/13: 42

Average class size 2012/13: 11

Value: One Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

PDAM skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Application of numeracy skills

Course survey results

(2010/11 - 2012/13 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 88%



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