Head of Department

Dr. Alan Piper

+49 461 805 2990
+49 461 805 2538
Gebäude Madrid - MAD 130a

About us

Welcome to the homepage of the department of International and Institutional Economics! Here we provide you with a brief idea about our activities and interests, along with our contributions to the institute, university and the wider (academic) world.

A key role of the international and institutional economics department is giving classes on the Institute’s BA and MA courses. We are responsible for the core undergraduate courses in economics (VWL), thus we give the mandatory modules in microeconomics (VWL1), macroeconomics (VWL2), and international economics (VWL3). On top of this we offer option courses, e. g. development economics and seminars in international economics. The department also contributes to the Institute’s MA European Studies course by giving classes in methodological skills and statistics. Members of the department have also given classes in research methods, empirical management and organization research, the economics of life satisfaction, institutional economics, and the economics and politics of Latin America. This teaching has been nominated several times for the university-wide teaching prize in the last few years, winning on one occasion. 

We also support students with their BA and MA thesis in various topic areas. These include, both currently and in the recent past the following: the planning fallacy and Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie; a critical assessment of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA); working class support for Brexit; an economic investigation regarding whether the current (early 2017) German budget and trade surplus is a problem;  business to business relationships in the cosmetics industry; economic development in Mexico; (im)migration in Chile and life satisfaction; the role of foreign direct investments in various countries; topics related to the impact of trade on development, development policies, de-growth and prosperity without growth; and topics at the intersection with Latin American Area Studies. We also support students with work and apprenticeship based projects too.

We have various research and academic interests. One centre of interest is on development economics. Here, we work on development and conflict, the political economy of economic development, the role of inequality, and behavioural development economics. Another interest is research within the ‘economics of happiness’ area. And members have a growing interest in innovation, self-employment and entrepreneurship (particularly women entrepreneurship). We have published a number of journal articles and book chapters in the last years. To learn more, please go to our individual webpages within this department website.

Elsewhere on the website, you will find news updates and in the research seminar section you can learn about past and upcoming seminars: the department is home to the institute’s informal research seminar series.  Furthermore, within the last 5 years, the department has hosted a conference on the Nordic model (Flensburg, 2013). Also, members of the department have co-organized a conference on "Teaching Economics" (Berlin, 2015) and a symposium on "Critical Development Economics" (Berlin, 2017). We are members of various professional societies, and peer-review academic articles for a variety of well-regarded journals.

We support the institution with regard to its international role, helping to maintain collaborations with international partners along with the university’s international office, we are active members of the various institutional committees, and participants of course accreditation procedures. We have hosted the "Teegespräch" seminar group and provided Stata and Latex training too. Further information can be found on our website, particularly the department news.

We thank you for your interest in the work we do. Please feel free to contact any of us for more information.