about the department
Economics is the study of the ways in which society allocates its resources among alternative uses and the consequences of these decisions. The areas of inquiry deal with a varied range of topics such as international trade, domestic and international financial systems, labor-market analysis, and the study of less-developed economies. Broadly speaking, the goal of an economics program is to train students to think analytically about social issues, and as such provide a solid foundation for further study and careers in economics as well as for multiple other pursuits.
The Columbia faculty in economics continue a distinguished tradition of research in a wide range of fields, from pure theory to applied subjects, and have achieved major distinctions for their work. The department's Ph.D. program attracts top-notch degree candidates from around the world.