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Programme Description

Economics offers full-time Ph.D. by research program. We provide students with a stimulating research environment which merges academic rigor with intellectual breadth. The program equips students with a strong knowledge of economic theory and analytical techniques, which enables them to conduct solid research in their chosen field of specialization.

The program curriculum includes coursework, participation in seminars and workshops, as well as research under the mentorship of research supervisor(s). The program generally takes four years to complete. It begins with one year of intensive study in the core subjects of economics (Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Econometrics, and Quantitative Methods), culminating in the submission of a thesis which documents the results of original research.

The program has a small student-to-faculty ratio, which fosters research collaboration between students and faculty members. Students also receive training in research and teaching methods. Our faculty’s research interests span across all major areas of economics, with significant strengths in Behavioral and Experimental Economics, Environmental Economics, Microeconomic Theory, Macroeconomics, Applied Microeconomics, Economic Growth and Development, and Econometrics.

Our recent publications appear in top economics journals, including Journal of Political Economy, Economic Journal, Journal of Economic Theory, Journal of Development Economics, Journal of Economic Growth, Review of Economics and Statistics, RAND Journal of Economics, International Economic Review, Games and Economic Behavior, Journal of Econometrics, Journal of Public Economics, Management Science, and Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, among others.

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The Ph.D. program in Economics is a full-time program. Part-time study or M.A. is not offered.

Degree Requirement​s

​​Ph.D, students must complete and pass the following:
  • Six core courses: Mathematical Economics (HE9001), Econometrics I (HE9002), Econometrics II (HE9003), Seminar in Microeconomics (HE9101), Seminar in Macroeconomics (HE9102) and Topics in Mathematical and Microeconomics (HE9106) (18 Academic Units)

Typically, Ph.D. students must complete the coursework requirement within the first two semesters (Generally students from other subjects take three semesters. The timeline should be discussed with the Supervisor and/or Graduate Coordinator). They should maintain a minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average of 3.50. They are also required to complete Epigeum Research Integrity (online course), HWG703 Graduate English (unless exempted) course, HWG702 Small Group Teaching, Information Research & Management (online course) and attend research seminars. Students on scholarship might have additional requirements to fulfil. Students are encouraged to work closely with their supervisor and the graduate co-ordinator to ensure timely completion of all the requirements. 

Ph.D. students will have to submit and defend their thesis proposal as part of the Qualifying Exam (also known as the Confirmation Exercise). The Qualifying Exam should be completed within 12 months (18 months for other subjects) from the start of candidature. The final completed thesis will be examined by a panel of internal and external examiners, after which, Economics students will make a seminar presentation before the oral examination. Refer to the Timeline and Milestones​ for more instructions. 

Graduate Assistantship Program (GAP)

Students receiving scholarship from the Ministry of Education (MOE) – RSS / NPGS / Grants – are required to fulfil the Graduate Assistantship Program (GAP). GAP is a set of hours divided into Teaching / Research / Development duties determined by the type of scholarship and natio​nality. The GAP is a form of in-service obligation effected for Cohort 2014 and onwards and has to be completed 6 months before the submission of the thesis.