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ECON 215 – Labor Economics

This course will introduce topics, theories, institutions, and policy issues relating to the functioning of labor markets. The topics we will cover include labor supply decisions, investments in human capital, compensating wage differentials, firms’ labor demand decisions, compensation programs, the economics of unemployment, and labor market discrimination. We will begin the course by analyzing the neo-classical labor supply, demand, and equilibrium. Then, we will explore the possible reasons why labor market outcomes may deviate from what the perfectly competitive neo-classical model predicts: factors such as human capital accumulation choices, productivity heterogeneity, institutional rigidities (e.g., minimum wage, unions), labor mobility, and discrimination.

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