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GHP 228 - Econometric Methods in Impact Evaluation or return to Course Catalog Search

190392 – Section 1   

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthGlobal Health & PopulationJessica Cohen
TermDay and TimeLocation
Spring (Full Term) 2018  (show academic calendar)F   8:00 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.FXB G03 (HSPH)
5  (show credit conversion for other schools)
Credit Level

The objective of this course is to provide students with a set of theoretical, econometric and reasoning skills to estimate the causal impact of one variable on another. Examples from the readings explore the causal effect of policies, laws, programs and natural experiments derived from pension programs to television shows to natural disasters. We will go beyond estimating causal effects to analyze the channels through which the causal impact was likely achieved. This will require that the students are familiar with microeconomic theories of incentives, institutions, social networks, etc.The course will introduce students to a variety of econometric techniques in impact evaluation and a set of reasoning skills intended to help them become both a consumer and producer of applied empirical research. Students will learn to critically analyze evaluation research and to gauge how convincing the research is in identifying a causal impact. They will use these skills to develop an evaluation plan for a topic of their own, with the aim of stimulating ideas for dissertation research. This is a methods class that relies heavily on familiarity with econometrics and microeconomics. These are pre-requisites for the course without exception. The course is intended for doctoral students who are finishing their course work and aims to help them transition into independent research.The aim of this course is to prepare doctoral students in the health systems track of the Global Health and Population department for the dissertation phase of their research and thus they will be given priority in enrollment. The course is also open to other GHP doctoral students, other GHP masters students and students from other departments, conditional on having adequate training in economics and the course having enough space.Pre-Requisites: Econometrics and intermediate micro-economics are required for this course. While students can get by with just these two subjects, some previous experience with regression analysis and applied economic research will be a huge advantage. Students seeing applied regression analysis for the first time in this course will most likely struggle with the reading.Students outside of HSPH must request instructor permission to enroll in this course


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