Skip to main content

Unit information: MRes Research Methods in Economics in 2020/21

Unit name MRes Research Methods in Economics
Unit code EFIMM0024
Credit points 15
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Bergemann
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Economics
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law


This unit introduces students to research in economics, with an emphasis on the practical skills needed to carry out original research. The unit will cover a number of key issues that arise in economic research and will prepare students for writing a PhD proposal and their MRes dissertation. These include:

Alternative approaches to, and key principles for, economic research (different types of theory, alternative approaches to empirical research) and relevant controversies - How to come up with a research topic and a research question, defining its core elements - How to prepare a literature review and access data - Writing a PhD proposal -Writing and presentation skills.

Intended learning outcomes

1. Knowledge and understanding of some standard principles for research design in economics, and the ability to discuss the scope and limitations of these principles.
2. An understanding of the key steps in formulating a research project in different fields of economics.
3. The ability to evaluate critically the advantages and disadvantages of different research methods.
4. An awareness of common problems faced by researchers, and how to address them.

Teaching details

Teaching will be delivered through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous sessions such as online teaching for large and small group, face-to-face small group classes (where possible) and interactive learning activities

Assessment Details

3 pieces of Coursework. 1. A Referee Repot (25%) 2. A Paper Replication (25%) 3. A Research Proposal (50%).

Reading and References

Kramarz, Francis; Angrist, Joshua D.; Blau, David M.; Falk, Armin; Robin, Jean-Marc; and Taber, Christopher R. (2006). How To Do Empirical Economics. Investigaciones Economicas, 30(2), 179-206. ​

​Steven G. Medema and Warren J. Samuels (1996). Foundations of research in economics : how do economists do economics? Edward Elgar, Cheltenham. [Library HB74.5 FOU] ​

​Dani Rodrik (2015). Economics Rules: why economics works, when it fails, and how to tell the difference. Oxford University Press, Oxford. [Library HB75 ROD]