Seminar: Economic Growth

Course content

This seminar covers the same ground as the course of the same name, i.e., theories of economic growth in developed countries. Topics for seminar papers include, but are not limited to, endogenous growth, R&D and growth, technology diffusion, trade and growth, misallocation, skill-biased technical change, automation, measurement of GDP and welfare, and whether growth will accelerate or cease in the future.


MSc programme in Economics

The seminar is primarily for students at the MSc of Economics.

Learning outcome

In addition to the learning outcome specified in the Curriculum the student is after completing the seminar expected to be able to:

  • Extend an existing theoretical model of economic such that it is able to replicate a stylized fact that it could not be explained previously
  • Empirically test an existing theory of economic growth using new data or new methodologies
  • Use models of economic growth to shed light on an ongoing policy debate.

- Kick-off meeting
- Finding literatur and defining the project
- Writing process of the seminar paper
- Presentation of own project and paper
- Giving constructive feedback to another student´s paper
- Actively participating in discussions at the presentations and other meetings.

At the seminar the student is trained independently to
- identify and clarify a problem,
- seek and select relevant literatur,
- write a academic paper,
- present and discuss own paper with the other students at the seminar.

The aim of the presentations is, that the student uses the presentation as an opportunity to practice oral skills and to receive feedback. The presentations is not a part of the exam and will not be assessed.

There is no weekly teaching/lecturing and the student cannot expect guidance from the teacher. If the teacher gives a few introduction lectures or gives the opportunity for guidance, this as well as other expectations are clarified at the kickoff meeting.

It is strongly recommended that you think about and search for a topic before the semester begins, as there is only a few weeks from the kick-off meeting to the submission of the project description/ agreement paper.

Before the presentations, your nearly finished version of the seminar project paper must be uploaded in Absalon, as the opponents and the other seminar participants have to read and comment on the paper. It is important that you upload a paper that is so finalized as possible due to the fact that the value of feedback and comments at the presentation is strongly associated with the skill level of the seminar paper.

After the presentations, you can with a few corrections improve the seminar paper by including the feedback and comments emerged during the presentations. It is NOT intended that you rewrite or begin the writing of the full project AFTER the presentation has taken place.

  • Acemoglu, D., & Autor, D. (2011). Skills, tasks and technologies: Implications for employment and earnings. Handbook of labor economics, 4, 1043-1171.
  • Acemoglu, D., & Restrepo, P. (2017a). Artificial Intelligence, Automation, and the Future of Work. Mimeo.
  • Acemoglu, D., & Restrepo, P. (2017b). Robots and Jobs: Evidence from US labor markets. Mimeo.
  • Aghion, P., & Howitt, P. (1992). A Model of Growth through Creative Destruction. Econometrica, 60(2).
  • Aghion, Philippe, et al. "Creative Destruction and Subjective Well-Being." American Economic Review 106.12 (2016): 3869-97.
  • Autor, D. H. (2015). Why Are There Still So Many Jobs? The History and Future of Workplace Automation. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 29(3), 3-30.
  • Barro and Sala-i-Martin 2004. Economic Growth. MIT press.
  • Bean, C. 2016. Independent review of UK economic statistics: Final report. Available at:
  • Bloom, N., Draca, M., & Van Reenen, J. (2016). Trade induced technical change? The impact of Chinese imports on innovation, IT and productivity. The Review of Economic Studies, 83(1), 87-117.
  • Bloom, N., Jones, C. I., Van Reenen, J., & Webb, M. (2017). Are ideas getting harder to find? (No. w23782). National Bureau of Economic Research.
  • Boskin, Michael J. "Economic measurement: Progress and challenges." The American Economic Review 90.2 (2000): 247-252.
  • Coe, D.T., E. Helpman; A. Hoffmaister, 1997. North-South R&D Spillovers. Economic Journal 107, 143-49.
  • Feyrer, J. (2009). Distance, trade, and income-the 1967 to 1975 closing of the Suez canal as a natural experiment (No. w15557). National Bureau of Economic Research.
  •  Frankel, J. A., & Romer, D. (1999). Does trade cause growth? American economic review, 379-399.
  • Gordon, Robert J. Is US economic growth over? Faltering innovation confronts the six headwinds. No. w18315. National Bureau of Economic Research, 2012.
  • Hausman, Jerry. "Cellular telephone, new products, and the CPI." Journal of business & economic statistics 17.2 (1999): 188-194.
  • Hsieh, C. T., & Klenow, P. J. (2009). Misallocation and manufacturing TFP in China and India. The Quarterly journal of economics, 124(4), 1403-1448.
  • Hsieh, C. T., & Moretti, E. (2017). Housing Constraints and Spatial Misallocation. Mimeo
  • Hsieh, C. T., Hurst, E., Jones, C. I., & Klenow, P. J. (2013). The allocation of talent and us economic growth (No. w18693). National Bureau of Economic Research.
  • Jones, Charles I. "Sources of US economic growth in a world of ideas." The American Economic Review 92.1 (2002): 220-239.
  • Jones, C. I. (2005). Growth and ideas. Handbook of economic growth, 1, 1063-1111.
  • Jones, Charles I., and Peter J. Klenow. "Beyond GDP? Welfare across countries and time." The American Economic Review 106.9 (2016): 2426-2457.
  • Jones, C.I., 2016. Life and Growth. Journal of Political Economy, April 2016, Vol. 124 (2), pp. 539-578.
  • Kneller, R., Bleaney, M. F., & Gemmell, N. (1999). Fiscal policy and growth: evidence from OECD countries. Journal of Public Economics, 74(2), 171-190.
  • Thornton, R. A., & Thompson, P. (2001). Learning from experience and learning from others: An exploration of learning and spillovers in wartime shipbuilding. American Economic Review, 1350-1368.

It is highly recommended to have followed the course Economic Growth before the seminar.

It is recommended that the student have a sound knowledge of macroeconomics and panel data econometrics

BSc in Economics or similar

Autumn 2019:
• Kick-off meeting: 3 September 2019 13.00-15.00
• Extra days of introducing teaching: Exact dates is agreed on at the kick-off meeting
• Deadline commitmentpaper: not later than October 1 at 10AM
• Deadline of pre-paper uploaded to Absalon: one week before presentations
• Presentations/Workshops: In the periode November 1 – 22. Exact dates is agreed on at the kick-off meeting

All information regarding the seminar is communicated through Absalon including venue. So it is very important that you by yourself logon to Absalon and read the information already when you are registered at the seminar.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written examination
A seminar paper in English that meets the formal requirements for written papers stated in the curriculum of the Master programme and at KUNet for seminars.
All aids allowed

for the seminar paper.

The teacher defines the aids that must be used for the presentations.


Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

Students are assessed on the extent to which they master the learning outcome for the seminar and can make use of the knowledge, skills and competencies listed in the learning outcomes in the Curriculum of the Master programme.


To receive the top grade, the student must with no or only a few minor weaknesses be able to demonstrate an excellent performance displaying a high level of command of all aspects of the relevant material.

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Seminar
  • 20
  • Project work
  • 186
  • English
  • 206