PhD Macroeconomics I

ECS506 PhD Macroeconomics I

Autumn 2024

  • Topics

    This is the first of two courses in macroeconomics in the PhD program at NHH. This course is designed to give an introduction to a broad selection of topics and methods in macroeconomics at the PhD level. It aims at providing the necessary background for more specialized courses in various sub-fields.

    The course will cover a selection of the following topics:

    • Dynamic Programming
    • Models of Economic Growth
    • Overlapping Generations (OLG) models
    • Incomplete markets models
    • Real Business Cycle Models

    A detailed syllabus will be circulated closer to the start of term.

  • Learning outcome


    Upon completion of the course, the student can…

    • apply workhorse models in modern real macroeconomics.
    • evaluate the use of basic mathematical tools to solve a macroeconomic model.
    • apply standard numerical methods to solve a model.
    • evaluate the implications of uncertainty and market incompleteness.


    Upon completion of the course, the student can…

    • build a model to analyze macroeconomic research questions.
    • analyze economic questions with modern macroeconomic models.
    • model explicitly individual decision making, and then analyze aggregate behavior.
    • evaluate the implications of the methodology used in modern macro papers.

    General competence

    Upon completion of the course, the student can…

    • communicate research questions, solution methods, and answer clearly.

  • Teaching

    Lectures and assignments.

    Each assignment will focus on a particular part of the course and will be will be distributed sequentially throughout the duration of the course. The deadline for each assignment will be a couple of weeks after the assignment is handed out.

  • Restricted access

    • PhD candidates at NHH.
    • PhD candidates at Norwegian institutions.
    • Motivated master student's at  NHH  may be admitted after application, but are subject to the approval from the course responsible on a case by case basis.

  • Recommended prerequisites

    It is assumed as a prerequisite that students are familiar with macroeconomics at the Master level.

    Previous experience of quantitative programming (eg, Matlab, Python, Julia) will be helpful, though it is not required.

  • Compulsory Activity

    Participation in class and completion of mandatory assignments.

    Compulsory activities (work requirements) are valid for one semester after the semester they were obtained.

  • Assessment

    Four individually written assignments. The assignments can be written in English or a Scandinavian language.

    • The first assignment is handed out after the fourth lecture and has a submission deadline of two weeks.
    • The second assignment is handed out after the eight lecture and has a submission deadline of two weeks.
    • The third assignment is handed out after the twelth lecture and has a submission deadline of two weeks. 
    • The fourth assignment is handed out after the last lecture and has a submission deadline of three weeks. 

    Re-take is offered the semester after the course was offered for students with valid compulsory activities.

  • Grading Scale


  • Computer tools

    Some assignments will require to code in a quantitative programming language (eg, Matlab, Julia, Python).

  • Literature

    Lecture notes and selected chapters from graduate textbooks, including:

    • Lars Ljungqvist and Thomas J. Sargent, Recursive Macroeconomic Theory
    • Tullio Jappelli and Luigi Pistaferri, The Economics of Consumption

    A detailed reading list will be provided at the start of term.


ECTS Credits
Teaching language

Autumn. Offered autumn 2024.

Course responsible

Assistant Professor Markus Karlman, Department of Economics (main course responsible) 

Associate Professor Jonna Olsson, Department of Economics