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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 or 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 teaching at the college level.

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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. Students who choose Industrial Organization, Competition Policy, and Regulatory Economics may further elect a second field in transportation 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. Students specializing in industrial organization may further elect a second field in transportation economics.

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.

Our faculty represents a wide cross-section of professional practices and in fields ranging from finance to education to biomedical science to management to the U.S. military. 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 Journal of Transport Economics and Policy and the administrative office of the Industrial Organization Society
  • The Economics department is associated with the Kitty & Michael Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy

Our graduates pursue careers within academia and beyond.

  • World Bank
  • Discover Financial Services
  • State Street Global Advisors
  • Office of Regulatory Economics, Department of Public Service, New York State
  • Charles River Associates
  • The Brattle Group
  • Ernst and Young
  • Nera, Inc.
  • Moody’s Analytics
  • Kazakh-British Technical University
  • CoStar Group
  • City University of New York (CUNY), Queen’s College
  • Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
  • Longwood University
  • Amazon

Application Materials

  • Application
  • Application fee – US $75.00
  • Personal statement
  • Resume
  • Unofficial transcripts from all institutions attended
  • English proficiency for international applicants
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE)


Admissions deadline for Fall term: January 4

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