econ term paper

Empirical Project The research project should be about 10 pages and should explain your data collection, model, and findings. The project (due by the final exam date) is worth 30% of your final grade. Below is a quick guide to doing empirical research. Guide to doing an empirical research:

 

Step 1: Preliminary Decisions: Before you start on your computer work and writing you need to decide upon a research area for your project. Most students will likely focus on testing theories in economics and finance. However, the topics are not constrained to these.

Step 2: Model formation and Literature review: Once you have picked a topic you should do a literature search (google scholar is a good place to start and so is the Journal of Economic Literature (available on line and in the library) to see what others who have done work on this topic have found and where they collected data. Based on this you should try to formulate a specific (or set of) statistical models.

Step 3: Data Collection Again, most data sources (macroeconomic and financial in particular) are available online. Students should have until Nov. 18 to indicate where their data sources will be coming from. This can be done via e-mail with an attached link.

Step 4: Computer Work Once you have gathered your data save them in an e-views file. Please provide me (via e-mail) a copy of your data file when you hand in your project. Estimate your regressions and test your hypotheses.

Step 5: Writing the Paper Show that you have understood and are able to apply some of the statistical concepts covered in the class. The paper should have the following parts: Introduction a. State the problem you want to study (what question(s) are you asking)? b. Explain why answering this question is important. c. Include a brief literature review and explain how your project adds to this literature. The Model d. Explain the logic behind of your model, inclusion of variables, statistical method used..ect. e. State your expectations of the signs of the regressors (specify the hypothesis you would like to test with the data). Reporting your results f. Interpret your results. g. Test hypotheses and report confidence intervals where appropriate. h. Where appropriate use your estimated model for prediction (forecasting). i. Check for violations of classical assumptions and other problems with specification Summary j. Summarize your findings and conclude by discussing what you would do next to improve the reliability of your report.  

 

Examples of paper topics:

The Effect of Family Income on Grade Point Averages

Life expectancy across nations Life expectancy across states

What explains obesity rates?

Cross National differences in literacy

Auto Fatality Rates across States

Interest Rates and Country Risk

Income Inequality and Crime

Salary Discrimination in the National Basketball Association?

Regression Analysis of Voter Turnout

Religion and Crime

Cigarette taxes and Smoking

Marriage and Productivity in Sports

Does financial aid raise college tuition?

The demand for MLB games

Divorce across States

Trade and Economic Growth

Can the economy help forecast elections results?

A Model of Voter Turnout

Politics and the Stock Market 

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