tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post5248251818120125476..comments2024-09-11T02:51:41.596-04:00Comments on Noahpinion: New Quartz column: How to get into an econ PhD programNoah Smithhttp://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comBlogger18125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-15872573096795200672013-08-20T17:14:14.613-04:002013-08-20T17:14:14.613-04:00(anIRprof)
Thanks, those make sense and they do a...(anIRprof)<br /><br />Thanks, those make sense and they do apply specifically to Econ. Why Econ was doing so much better than physical science fields was the real puzzle to me, and #1 and especially #2 (govt jobs and federal research grants way way down) are very different from what's happened in STEM fields since 2008. <br /><br />That said, it's worth it for aspiring Econ PhD students keeping an eye on those trends. They can ask the poli-sci students finishing dissertations on the Middle East and South Asia this year whether that market looks as good as it did when they started back in 2007.... <br /><br /><br /><br /><br />Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-70620889718131699862013-08-19T21:40:00.361-04:002013-08-19T21:40:00.361-04:00That's an interesting answer, actually. Why so...<i>That's an interesting answer, actually. Why so good given such a crappy period for university budgets? Have universities been exempting Econ departments from campus-wide hiring freezes?</i><br /><br />Three reasons:<br /><br />1. Business schools. There has been a massive nationwide boom. It won't last forever obviously but it might go global.<br /><br />2. Government. The government has been hiring a LOT of economists since the crisis.<br /><br />3. Consulting and finance. A lot of people take jobs in industry. Many find these jobs quite fulfilling, and they certainly pay well (usually better than prof jobs).<br /><br />There may be other reasons too.Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-2882247598574400562013-08-19T21:31:55.817-04:002013-08-19T21:31:55.817-04:00Would you be able to provide clarification on this...<i>Would you be able to provide clarification on this math thing, then? Roughly at what ranking of school do you really need more than multivariable calc/stat/computational linear algebra (plus diffy q and real analysis self-studied)?</i><br /><br />When I went to Michigan, a lot of the grad students had exactly this level of math. When I was admitted, Michigan was #10; it's fallen a bit since then.Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-9668220528290182852013-08-19T21:29:22.001-04:002013-08-19T21:29:22.001-04:00I could not figure out if you were flippant, or wh...<i>I could not figure out if you were flippant, or whether economists would actually find it interesting.</i><br /><br />Probably both!Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-65614285812815589702013-08-19T18:08:01.696-04:002013-08-19T18:08:01.696-04:00(anIRprof again)
"YES. Really."
1. On...(anIRprof again)<br /><br />"YES. Really."<br /><br />1. On behalf of my younger colleagues, I hate you. :)<br /><br />2. That's an interesting answer, actually. Why so good given such a crappy period for university budgets? Have universities been exempting Econ departments from campus-wide hiring freezes? It's not just humanities that have had it tough post-2008, after all. Science PhDs -- Chemistry, Physics, etc -- have also had it tough, certainly compared to the decade before 2008. <br /><br />Tenure line allocation isn't actually a market process, and Deans/Provosts/Presidents aren't known for radical resource shifts between departments. Would make for fun faculty senate meetings, at least... Anyway, if the econ market has been as unaffected as you suggest, it bears explaining.<br /><br /><br />Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-6040296188129956232013-08-19T15:52:59.854-04:002013-08-19T15:52:59.854-04:00Would you be able to provide clarification on this...Would you be able to provide clarification on this math thing, then? Roughly at what ranking of school do you really need more than multivariable calc/stat/computational linear algebra (plus diffy q and real analysis self-studied)?Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-11172463350185213132013-08-19T13:48:47.967-04:002013-08-19T13:48:47.967-04:00Come on; the PhD comment was a joke.
The paper yo...Come on; the PhD comment was a joke.<br /><br />The paper you link to was interesting as a math paper, and there are similar papers in the control theory literature. I could not figure out if you were flippant, or whether economists would actually find it interesting.<br /><br />Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-88348685221506536782013-08-19T13:14:29.759-04:002013-08-19T13:14:29.759-04:00Oh hey look, I found someone who applied different...Oh hey look, I found someone who applied differential geometry to game theory: http://plaza.ufl.edu/artyom/Papers/Game.pdfNoah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-5714450914297619652013-08-19T13:11:37.384-04:002013-08-19T13:11:37.384-04:00Wow, perhaps I should do this (easy) PhD thing.
I...<i>Wow, perhaps I should do this (easy) PhD thing.</i><br /><br />IS THIS NOT WHAT I HAVE BEEN SAYING!!!1!<br /><br /><i>However, I still find it amazing that you can get by without the differential geometry. Specifically, some understanding of the types of singularities of surfaces/varieties defined as intersections/solutions of simultaneous equations. Perhaps that is more a micro-economics thing, than a macro?</i><br /><br />I've never heard of a micro person using differential geometry. Ever. Maybe someone has used it, once. Go find Lones Smith and email him and ask him. :-)Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-1769538719759034262013-08-19T12:57:22.154-04:002013-08-19T12:57:22.154-04:00Wow, perhaps I should do this (easy) PhD thing.
Y...Wow, perhaps I should do this (easy) PhD thing.<br /><br />You are the economist, and I bow before your superior knowledge of how much math is relevant. I also admit that I threw in the group theory bit to plausibly cover more or less everything a math/physics major would cover. Heck, I was a cs major, and even I was taught abstract algebra (groups/rings/fields/lattices bunch of structure theorems), but I did have an independent interest.<br /><br />However, I still find it amazing that you can get by without the differential geometry. Specifically, some understanding of the types of singularities of surfaces/varieties defined as intersections/solutions of simultaneous equations. Perhaps that is more a micro-economics thing, than a macro?<br /><br />Aside: like the blog, even though I agree with only a proper subset of what you write.<br />Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-33117398636538493342013-08-19T11:32:58.318-04:002013-08-19T11:32:58.318-04:00can you really do research in a quantitative subje...<i>can you really do research in a quantitative subject without a lot more algebra (group theory variety, ie what a mathematician or physicist would call algebra, ie something beyond high school) and differential geometry (if you are looking at various game equilibria, can you really study this without being able to calculate all the different way groups of surfaces can intersect, and the points of singularity thereof)?</i><br /><br />Yes. I studied group theory and differential geometry as an undergrad physics major, but I never once used them in econ, nor did any theory people I know (actually, Miles once used a group theory thing, but really he was just showing off). Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-15502112382128804122013-08-19T11:28:24.200-04:002013-08-19T11:28:24.200-04:00The math requirements seem really light, even for ...The math requirements seem really light, even for the more mathy track. I am no economist, but can you really do research in a quantitative subject without a lot more algebra (group theory variety, ie what a mathematician or physicist would call algebra, ie something beyond high school) and differential geometry (if you are looking at various game equilibria, can you really study this without being able to calculate all the different way groups of surfaces can intersect, and the points of singularity thereof)?<br /><br />But perhaps some of this is studied under differential equations?<br /><br />Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-63744831265071406042013-08-18T21:36:37.186-04:002013-08-18T21:36:37.186-04:00you hardly see anybody but Math and Physics majors...<i>you hardly see anybody but Math and Physics majors admitted in Econ depts these days.</i><br /><br />That is true at MIT and a couple other schools, but at Michigan, all but 1 or 2 of my cohort were econ majors, and few were double majors.Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-44440724008020081982013-08-18T21:31:14.861-04:002013-08-18T21:31:14.861-04:00No problem getting jobs for everyone at a top-100 ...<i>No problem getting jobs for everyone at a top-100 program (i.e., just about everywhere)? Really?!? Is the market in Econ really _that_ far out of line with every other academic discipline?</i><br /><br />YES. Really.Noah Smithhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/09093917601641588575noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-54426859792359140682013-08-18T21:13:33.919-04:002013-08-18T21:13:33.919-04:00(cross-posted comment from Quartz)
No problem get...(cross-posted comment from Quartz)<br /><br />No problem getting jobs for everyone at a top-100 program (i.e., just about everywhere)? Really?!? Is the market in Econ really _that_ far out of line with every other academic discipline?<br /><br />I know in Political Science, even PhDs coming out of top-20 programs have had some difficulty finding jobs since the 2008 crash. If you are from a top-5 program, like Harvard or Princeton, you almost certainly have found a job, but maybe not at a very good school. If you're from program #20, you'd better have pulled off a sole-author journal publication or a have a university press book contract in hand before you even bother mailing out resumes.<br /><br />As for below the top-20, well, the general advice in the field these days is that if you don't get into a top 20 program, don't even bother accepting -- your job prospects will be bleak. Even non-academic prospects have become limited due to federal hiring freezes (i.e., no more job openings at the State Dept, CIA, etc).<br /><br />And as bad as that sounds, we comfort ourselves that at least our prospects are much better than in History, English, or many other fields.<br /><br />-anIRprof<br /><br /><br />PS: Agreed with previous anon that the math recs sound light. I've heard at top programs (e.g., Stanford), you hardly see anybody but Math and Physics majors admitted in Econ depts these days.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-7161026993911786082013-08-17T19:25:48.356-04:002013-08-17T19:25:48.356-04:00I would really enjoy a post about OLG models and w...I would really enjoy a post about OLG models and what is so special about them...Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-73643843041827400912013-08-17T11:01:24.674-04:002013-08-17T11:01:24.674-04:00I took both varieties of linear along with regress...I took both varieties of linear along with regression analysis. It was a rough semester but I have pretty thorough understanding of how that particular machine works. Lots of statistics and calculus, multi variable analysis, linear, computer science, and whatever general mathematics you can pack into your options. I regret never having taken measure theory but you can't fit everything. Anonymoushttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05932496549711542374noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-17232051.post-14779868845846631672013-08-17T08:30:01.972-04:002013-08-17T08:30:01.972-04:00This is great - thank you. Regarding linear algeb...This is great - thank you. Regarding linear algebra, many colleges have multiple versions of this course it seems. Some are more methods based and some are more proofs based (and harder). Is it important to take the harder versions?<br /><br />On that note - what math is truly needed for a good chance at top PhD programs? Your suggestions seemed a little light (e.g., self study higher level courses, only 2 higher level math courses mentioned, etc.) compared with what some top PhD programs websites suggest - but maybe those suggestions are not truly reflective of the full range of backgrounds of people getting in.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.com