PhD Program

The PhD in Economics is a small and focused program, with students concentrating in one of two areas of specialization: Industrial Organization, Competition Policy, and Regulatory Economics and Labor Economics. The program is applied in nature and is designed for students who are considering work in the government and private sectors as well as academic jobs.

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Fewer than ten students enter the PhD in Economics program each year. Students may concentrate in either Industrial Organization, Competition Policy, and Regulatory Economics; or Labor Economics. Each field is covered in two semester courses at the PhD level. Admission from the Bachelor’s level requires taking the MA core courses and two additional elective courses plus the PhD requirements.

The field of Industrial Organization, Competition Policy, and Regulatory Economics analyzes and evaluates the performance of markets and devises appropriate policy responses when markets are not performing well. By developing techniques for examining the structure, conduct, and performance of markets, it bridges economic theory and the real world. In addition, it helps to develop and implement antitrust and regulatory policies to remedy failures of those markets.

The field of Labor Economics analyzes the neoclassical labor market, covering such topics as the supply of labor from the perspective of the individual and the family, human capital, the demand for labor, market equilibrium, and the determination and distribution of wages and earnings. Theoretical and empirical issues surrounding current topics in labor economics are examined, and may include discrimination, efficiency wage theory, labor legislation, life cycle analysis and the use of microdata (panel studies), search behavior, intergenerational earnings mobility, and employment and training policies.

Learn more about the PhD program in Economics from the College of Social Sciences and Humanities.

The Economics department faculty engage in research in a wide range of academic and applied areas including industrial organization, competition policy, labor economics, development economics, network science, innovation policy, health, applied game theory, monetary policy, banking, technological change, law and economics, and education.  They serve as mentors and advisors, and collaborate alongside students to solve the most pressing global challenges facing established and emerging markets.

  • Students may enter the program from a Bachelor’s or Master’s level
  • Students concentrate in Industrial Organization, Competition Policy, and Regulatory Economics or Labor Economics
  • The department is home to the administrative office of the Industrial Organization Society

Our graduates pursue careers within academia and beyond.

  • Amazon
  • Analysis Group
  • Charles River Associates
  • City University of New York (CUNY), Queen’s College
  • The Brattle Group
  • Ernst and Young
  • Federal Trade Commission
  • Federal Reserve Bank
  • Moody’s Analytics
  • Nera, Inc.
  • World Bank

Application Materials

  • Application
  • Application fee – US $100
  • Personal statement
  • Unofficial transcripts from all institutions attended
  • English proficiency for international applicants
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) – Optional
  • Resumé


Admissions deadline for Fall term: December 1

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