What We Do

The Department of Economics is ranked in the top 20 economics graduate programs by U.S. News & World Report. In the last three years, Duke Economics faculty members have conducted on average $5.1 million in sponsored and institutionally funded research for industry, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the National Science Foundation. Our faculty serve on 26 editorial boards and hold 49 editorships across 59 academic journals and two book series. The department serves approximately 300 graduate students.

See our working paper series.


What exactly turns a developing country into a developed country? In recent years, economists have paid increasing attention to the factors that affect prosperity in developing countries.

In order to study complex topics, economists need a powerful set of mathematical tools that look to the data to uncover hidden answers.

Energy markets and the natural environment are becoming increasingly important areas of economic analysis, and nowhere is this more apparent than in policy debates.

Economics as a discipline evolved from what was once called “political economy” during the times of Adam Smith and John Stuart Mill.

What is the demand for new homes during a recession? How much are consumers willing to pay for the latest iPhone? IO economists can estimate demand for a particular industry and willingness to pay for goods by analyzing consumer behavior.

In today’s global economy, trade between countries is more important than ever before.

Labor economics deals with the supply of and demand for labor, specifically how employees and employers behave in response to factors such as production costs, income, taxes, and working conditions. Education, family structure, and even fertility can be factors that affect the labor supply.

How can we model growth in a global economy with many nonlinear and dynamic relationships? Macroeconomics helps provide answers to large-scale economic issues that can have a global impact by looking at governments, industries, central banking, and business cycles.

Microeconomic theorists create models that apply rigorous mathematical reasoning to economic and social contexts in order to examine the behaviors of individuals and firms.

Public economics and political economy are parallel fields: both study government organizations and political institutions to analyze and improve public policy issues.