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Unformatted text preview: 1 Rutgers University Department of Economics Economics 340: Economics of Income Inequality and Discrimination – Fall 2011 Professor Jennifer Hunt Class time: MW 13.10-14.30 New Jersey Hall 411, phone TBA Class room: FH A-6 [email protected] Office hours: M 15.00-17.00 Goals The purpose of the course is to develop a philosophical and theoretical understanding of the ideal distribution of income, goods and services; to build on this to develop methods of measuring inequality, poverty, life-time and intergenerational mobility; to translate these tools into empirical analysis of various countries; and to discuss the theory and empirics of redistributing income. The course title notwithstanding, there will be little discussion of discrimination. Pre-requisites and tools Intermediate micro (Econ 320) and econometrics (Econ 322 or 326). The theoretical part of the course uses both differential and integral single-variable calculus in analyzing social welfare functions and inequality measures. The empirical part of the course requires the ability to interpret the results of ordinary least squares regressions. The course will make use of some economic tools you may have already encountered in intermediate micro, related to insurance, taxation, labor supply and utility possibility frontiers; these will be reviewed in class. Several problem sets will require the use of statistical software. STATA is the statistical software used by most empirical economists. Its great advantage for the purpose of this course is that users have programmed various measures of inequality and poverty that can be downloaded (if you have write permission in the applications folder of your computer) and used. I recommend you use STATA for the empirical problem sets and the research paper, although if you know how to compute things such as the Generalized Entropy Index of inequality in other software you can use another software. To get started with STATA, watch the movies and use the data at http://www.ats.ucla.edu/stat/stata/sk/default.htm . Grading There will be five problem sets, together worth 20% of the grade, one midterm exam worth 35%, and a cumulative final exam worth 45%. Students receiving low grades will not have the opportunity to improve their grade. Problem sets are due in class at the beginning of class; collaboration for these is permitted in very small groups. class; collaboration for these is permitted in very small groups....
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This note was uploaded on 10/23/2011 for the course ECONOMICS 340 taught by Professor Hunt during the Spring '11 term at Rutgers.
- Spring '11