2023-2024 Catalog 
    Apr 23, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog

International & Development Economics, MS

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Undergraduate & Graduate Academic Programs

The goal of the program is to help students understand how market forces can be harnessed to free the poor in developing countries from cycles of poverty, and examines the importance of institutions that regulate market forces.

The program integrates rigorous training in quantitative economics with overseas field study internship in a developing country.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the application of modern micro and macroeconomic theory to the key problems of economic development, trade and finance, including the analysis of market failures, poverty traps, the structure of incentives, the use of game theory to model institutional behavior, and open economy models of trade, migration, foreign direct investment, financial markets, and exchange rate determination
  • Design and carry out a fieldwork-based research project, including formation of an original research question, planning of an effective methodology, development of field protocols/survey instruments, and data collection in a developing or transition country
  • Conduct original quantitative empirical analysis of an international or development economics problem. Specifically, students should be able to express an economic theory in terms of an observable model; determine the appropriate estimation method for the empirical model; utilize statistical software to conduct such estimation; and meaningfully interpret the results
  • Effectively communicate research finding both in writing and orally, including compilation of a professional literature review, clear presentation of theoretical and empirical models, econometric analysis, and the relevance of the study’s principal findings and implications for international and/or economic development theory and policy

Major Requirements (36 units)


Overseas Field Study Internship

This requirement is typically met during the summer before the student’s final semester in the program, and involves a 1-3 month period of field study in a developing country, with arrangements to be worked out between the student and supervising faculty. Universities in countries such as the Philippines, El Salvador, and others have partnered with USF for the field study program. In most cases, research data and interviews obtained during field study will be applied toward the master’s research project.

Master’s Research Project and Presentation

Students enroll in the graduate seminar during the latter part of their coursework where they receive guidance and supervision in completing their own research projects. Upon completion their research is presented to faculty members, with the student receiving one of the following grades: pass with honors, pass, pass conditional upon revision, or fail.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Undergraduate & Graduate Academic Programs