Microeconomics of Development

  • Overview

This course discusses frontier topics in the microeconomics of development literature. It will emphasize the analysis of individual behavior, markets and institutions in the context of developing countries. After a discussion of microeconomic aspects of household economics, the course offers a rigorous treatment of fundamental markets that are key for the provision of credit, employment opportunities and protection against risks and shocks. The course will then analyze a set of topics related to human capital accumulation (education, health, nutrition, etc.) to conclude with a treatment of institutional and environmental topics, including property rights, technology adoption, social norms and economic networks.

This is a research course. It will emphasize the use of econometric techniques for the identification of causal effects and its connection with economic modeling. As a consequence, the readings of this class will be composed by papers based on randomized controlled trials and “natural” experiments. Students are assumed to have knowledge of these techniques.


  • Referee Reports

There are good guidelines about how to write referee reports written by Alain de Janvry (here) and Chriss Blattman (here). Some examples:

RR on “Railroads of the Raj: Estimating the Impact of Transportation Infrastructure

RR on “Trade, Tastes and Nutrition

RR on “Commodity Prices Shocks and Civil Conflict: Evidence from Colombia

RR on “Suffrage, Schooling and Sorting in the Post-Bellum U.S. South

RR on “The Effect of Political Alignment on Transfers in Portuguese Municipalities

RR on “Water Pollution and Digestive Cancer in China