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Economic Growth

  • Teacher(s):  
  • Course given in: English
  • ECTS Credits:
  • Schedule: Spring Semester 2020-2021, 4.0h. course (weekly average)
      WARNING :   this is an old version of the syllabus, old versions contain   OBSOLETE   data.
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The aim of this course is to understand the key features of the growth and development process at the world level, both theoretically and empirically. The first part of the course will introduce a number of theoretical models to develop an analytical framework of economic growth in historical perspective and across countries. In the second part we will study empirically the fundamental sources of the vast income and growth differences across countries.

a) Goals of the first part of the Course [“Theory”]

- Get to know the facts of economic growth across countries and time

- Provide a rigorous theoretical framework to think about economic growth and development, including the study of

i) economic growth over the the long-run, and the transition of economies from stagnation to per capita income growth

ii) neoclassical growth theories and the contribution of different factors to economic growth and development

iii) endogenous growth theories that explain where technological progress comes from

b) Goals of the second part of the Course [“Topics”]

- Cover important topics at the frontier of current research to identify the sources of growth and development.

- Introduction to current empirical methods in applied economics.

The principal instructors are Dr Johannes Buggle [] and Dr Tiziano Rotesi [].

The TA for the course is Andrea Berlanda [].

The presentation material is downloadable from the Moodle website of the course. The reading list for the second part of the course including the compulsory reading and the list of papers for the referee reports will be distributed after week 4. The exact format of the reports (i.e. topics) will also be explained after week 4.

The course will be delivered online in Spring 2021.

Please find the link for the MOODLE page here:

You can join the course without password.

Videos: Every week on Monday we will upload several short videos on moodle.

Meetings: In addition, we will be available every Thursday, 14.15 – 15.00 on ZOOM to fur-ther discuss the content of the videos, discuss questions that could be asked in the mid-term and final exam, and to clarify your questions.


PART I : Theory

Session 1 (Johannes)

- Introduction, Stylized Facts on Macro Development

- Stages of Growth: Malthusian Model

Session 2 (Tiziano)

- Unified Growth Theory

- The main components of UGT

Session 3 (Tiziano)

- Exercise Session for UGT

- Neoclassical Growth Theory

Session 4 (Tiziano)

- Neoclassical Growth Theory

Session 5 (Johannes)

- Endogenous Growth

- Exercise Session and Q&A Mid-Term

Session 6: Mid-Term Exam (Problem Set)

PART II : Topics

The reading list and the papers for the referee reports will be distributed after week 4.

Session 7: Institutions (Johannes)

Session 8: Culture (Tiziano)

Session 9: Geography & Natural Resources (Johannes)

Session 10: Human Capital & Innovation (Johannes)

Session 11: Trade and Migration (Tiziano)

Session 12: Inequality and Poverty (Tiziano)

Session 13: Conflict and War (Tiziano)

Session 14: Growth and the Environment (Johannes)


PART I : Theory

- Galor, 2011, Unified Growth Theory

- Aghion & Howitt, 2009, The Economics of Growth

- Jones & Vollrath, 2013, Introduction to Economic Growth (Third Edition)

- Romer, 2011, Advanced Macroeconomics

PART II : Topics

The list of papers for the class presentation will be distributed after week 4.


First attempt

Oral 0h30 minutes

- 1 Mid-Term Problem Set: 30%

- 1 Referee Report 30%

- 1 Oral Exam: 40%


Written 2h00 hours
Not allowed
Not allowed

The make-up exam (both theoretical and empirical parts) stands alone: the previous results (midterm / class presentation / Final exam) will not be taken into account. Documentation will not be allowed in all exams.

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