ECON 256: Poverty, Growth & Inequality

Course Information

Time: 2:00–3:15pm Sun, Tues; 5:00-6:15pm Mon
Location: LA12

Office: 0D25

Changelog (Updated: Mar 20, 2018)

Lecture Notes & Slides

Second Half of Semester

Correlation vs Causation (Ted Talk on Correlation vs Causation; R code for: computing correlation, statistical artifacts, regression to the mean)
Causation in Development (Paul Romer Ted Talk on Charter Cities)
Foreign Aid (NYT Article on Unintended Impact of Migrant Rescue Missions; Video on Land Reform in South Africa)

Regression Primer (Regression CheatSheet)
Instrumental Variables Primer

Equality of Opportunity & Equality of Outcomes
Education and Development (Video on Economic Despair)
Selection of Articles: LA Times Article on Teacher Value Added, NYT Article on Teaching to the Test, Diffusion of Teacher Quality Across Schools in NYT
Chetty Slides on MTO Program and on Life Expectancy and Income Equality (Chetty on American Dream)
Chetty, Hendren, Katz (2016) Paper on Neighborhood Effects on Children
Equality of Opportunity Project (Income Inequality and Student Outcomes and NYT Mobility Map)

Slides on Financial Markets (Muhammad Yunus on Grameen Bank, Video on Microcredit Benefits, BBC Video on Microfinance, Summary of AEJ Sepcial Issue on Microcredit)

Final Exam
Final Guide
Sample Questions (Solutions)

First Half of Semester

Growth Rates and Income Differences
Introduction and Cross-Country Income Differences
Slides on Deriving Formulas for Convergence (Notes on Time to Convergence and Excel Example and Japan Catchup)

Population Growth and Malthusian Model
Excel Sheet of Population Growth
Slides on Population Growth (Roland Slides Fertility Choices, WorldBank Blog on Population Growth Slowdown)
Malthusian Growth Model (Kim Ruhl Slides on Production Functions)

Growth Accounting
Solow Growth Model
Growth Accounting Slides
Notes on How to Do Growth Accounting
Mexican Growth Accounting Example
Endogeneous TFP Growth

Structural Change and Misallocation
Misallocation and Development (Simple Two Firm Example of Misallocation)
Structural Change

Case Studies of Growth and Decline
Case Studies for Korea, China, and Argentina (Economist article on Argentina's National Account Statistics)

Poverty and Inequality
Slides on Poverty
Simulating an Economy in R
Gapminder Video on Poverty Statistics


Midterm Guide
Two Dollars a Day in the US, No American's Under $2 a day, World Bank Monitoring Global Poverty Report
Slides from Resetting the Urban Network (Paper Link)
How Poor are Americas Poorest
Mapping Prejudice Minneapolis Data; Shots Fired Data Minneapolis


Handout for Worksheet on Growth Rates (Solution)
Handout for Worksheet on Solow Growth Model (Solution)
Handout for Worksheet on Poverty Rates and Gini Coefficients (Solution)
Handout for Midterm Sample Questions (Solution)

Handout for Worksheet on Correlations (Solution)
Handout for Worksheet on Regressions (Solution): Q1 R-Code, Q2 R-Code, Excel File with Graphs for Question 2, Stata Code)
Handout for Worksheet on Credit Markets (Solution)

Data Sources