Experimental Methods in Business and Economics

SAM22 Experimental Methods in Business and Economics

Autumn 2023

Spring 2024
  • Topics

    Experimental methods have become dominant ways of learning and improving both economic policies and business practices.

    The course introduces the students to experimental methods, with applications to economics and business cases.

    We will cover the theory behind experimental methods and will learn how to use the methods to answer specific questions. Students will learn how to design and analyse an experiment. By the end of the course they will be equipped with one of the most powerful tools of quantitative methods.

  • Learning outcome

    Upon successful completion of the course, the student will:


    • Know what experimental methods are,
    • Understand the assumptions upon which the methods are based,
    • Know what is required to design, conduct and analyse an experiment,
    • Be able to discuss the pros and cons of the experimental approach to answer a specific question,


    • Be able to design and to analyse an experiment,
    • Be able to present critically an experimental design and the results of an experiment,

    General competencies

    • Experience how to work in groups to design and implement experimental projects,
    • Practice the presentation of study results,
    • Have gained a better understanding of how to read and criticize the scientific literature in economics and the way businesses test new policies.

  • Teaching

    Lectures, student presentations and group assignments.

  • Recommended prerequisites

    The students should have followed a course in basic statistics, econometrics (linear regression), and have some knowledge of R or Stata. For example, MET4 or an equivalent course.

  • Credit reduction due to overlap


  • Compulsory Activity

    The design of experiment I, done in groups of 3-4 students.

  • Assessment

    The assessment is based on:

    a) 4 hour home exam, done individually (75%),

    b) The analysis of an experiment II, done in groups of 3-4 students (25%).

    The assignment for the experiment will be available at the start of the semester. Submission deadline will be at the end of the semester.

    The exam and the assignment must be written in English.

  • Grading Scale


  • Computer tools


  • Literature

    Lecture notes and selected articles.


ECTS Credits
Teaching language

Spring. Offered Spring 2023.

Course responsible

Associate Professor, Samuel Hirshman, Department of Economics

Associate Professor, Vincent Somville, Department of Economics (main course responsible)