ECON 681: Comparative Institutional Economics I

Theory, empirics, and practice of economic institutions. Genesis, functions, and effects of institutions. Examination of three major institutions, property, contract, and decentralization. Historical, cultural, political, and economic origins of institutions. Case studies from English history, comparative legal studies, China, history of world economic development, transition, and socialism. Perspectives from law and economics, new institutional economics, contract theory, and information theory.

ECON 682: Comparative Institutional Economics II

A continuation of Econ 681. A topics course focusing on current developments in the literature, such as legal origins, empirical studies of the effects of institutions on trade, development, finance, contract, and property, culture as institution and institutional determinant, theory and practice of measurement of institutions, the design of institutions, legal transplants.

Field Requirements in Comparative Institutional Economics

Major field: Econ 681 and 682 plus one other course. If Econ 681 or 682 is not offered then an appropriate substitution would be a readings course in institutional economics. Other options can be discussed with faculty members in the field. The third course would be a complementary course from another field.

Average grade of B+ or better in the three courses. Either a field paper or field exam covering Econ 681 and 682 (or an alternative course if one is not offered). The decision on which option to take should be in consultation with pertinent faculty. Normally the paper would constitute beginning work on the dissertation, a substantial paper due by the middle of Spring of the third year. A satisfactory field paper must be completed for a faculty member to commit to be the student's dissertation advisor. The dissertation topic would normally follow from the paper, but it is possible that an acceptable paper would lead to the conclusion that a different topic should be pursued.

Minor field:  Econ 681 and 682. If only one is offered, the other course could be a readings course in institutional economics or a highly complementary course from another field, chosen in consultation with pertinent faculty. Average grade of B+ or better in the courses.