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IPAF 4900- Opportunities

An Exploration of the Business Cycle-Growth Nexus

Project Title: An Exploration of the Business Cycle-Growth Nexus

Term: Summer 2016

Supervisor: Hashmat Khan Unit: Economics

Description of project: Business cycles and long-term economic growth are typically viewed as two separate branches of macroeconomics. Recent observations in many industrialized and emerging market countries, however, have challenged this view. Slow recovery in the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis of 2007 has been accompanied by a decreased growth of potential output.

This suggests a deeper interplay between business cycles and growth. But the nexus between the two is not well understood or remains relatively unexplored in the literature.

The objective of this research project is to consider theoretical and empirical linkages between business cycles and economic growth. In addition, the project will also explore how policy responses aimed at stabilizing the business cycle pose externalities for long term growth.

Number of students required: One

Research duties:

  •  To prepare a literature review and organize bibliography
  •  To collect and organize data
  •  To conduct basic data analysis (making plots, figures, basic econometric analysis)
  • Approximately 5 hours per week, 65 hours for a 12-week term or 10 hours per week, 65 hours for a 6-week term

Learning and reflection activities:

  • Assigned readings related to the research topic
  • An essay on an assigned topic related to the research project, involving data collection and
  • econometric analysis

Learning outcomes:

  • New knowledge of important research topics in macroeconomics
  • New knowledge on how to initiate a research process
  • Improved/Enhanced data organizing and data analysis skills
  • Improved/Enhanced writing skills for describing and/or explaining economic issues

Evaluation Criteria:

  • Essay on the assigned topic 50% (Suggested length: approximately 3000 words, plus tables, figures, references; due date: end of the 6-week or 12-week term)
  • Literature review for the research project 20% (Due date: end of the 6-or 12-week term)
  • Data collection, data analysis for the research project 30% (Progress update via regularly scheduled meetings)

Skills or knowledge required:

  • Stata (required), Matlab (optional)
  • Pre-requisite ECON 4706

Any required health and safety training: None

Other considerations: Fluency in English required, example(s) of previous writing sample

Application instructions:

Participants are selected on the basis of merit and fit with the research project. Please submit a CV, transcript, and cover letter indicating why you are interested in and qualified for this research experience to the undergraduate administrator of the unit listed above. The application deadline is normally April 30th (for IPAF 4900 opportunities in the summer or fall term), August 15th (for fall and winter term opportunities) and November 15th (to take IPAF 4900 in the winter or summer term). Only students with a GPA of 9.5 or higher and at least third year honours standing will be considered.