to write an excellent comprehensive paper, what topics and techniques must an economist learn? One of my former professors wrote a paper I read, there are theories, calculations, and empirical tests. As far as I am concerned, general equilibrium calculations were used, and time series analysis was also used. On the other hand, what skill set is necessary for mathematical modeling in a paper? I try to make a list, -DSGE,-GE -time series analysis, -RBC, and -intermediate game theory are on my list now. Apart from focusing on micro or macro, to write some comprehensive papers, what tools are necessary for an economist or what do you recommend to learn... thank you
This depends on exact subfield or even topic you are interested in. For example, there are people who only work on theory, and there you only need strong math background and nothing else. If you work on applied economics you don't need as strong math background but you need good programming skills.
Requires very strong mathematical background, regardless whether we talk about micro or macroeconomics.
In macroeconomics there is probably slightly more focus on differential equations than in micro but you still need it for micro.
Important areas of study are:
- Linear Algebra
- Advanced Calculus (e.g. multivariate calculus, calculus of variations...)
- Differential Equations
- Control Theory
- Real Analysis
- Set Theory
This list is not exclusive, but note depending on what topic you work on some of the above are not as important. For example, if you wanna work on DSGE models you don't really need to know set theory. However, in micro set theory can be important.
You don't need as strong math skills as for theoretical work, but you need to be familiar with programming in R or Python or at least know decent programs like Stata at very least. You still need to know some of the math above but not so deeply as for theory. For applied work you mainly need:
- Linear Algebra
- Advanced Calculus
- Statistics & Econometrics
- Strong Programming Skills (preferably R or Python)
- Good Database Skills
However you should still understand enough of the math used in theory in your field to be able to test some theories unless you want to just be purely applied economists, but best empirical papers usually refer to some theories.
Here you need similar math skills to theoretical work plus:
- Discrete Math
- Good Programming Skills (however here mainly in Matlab, Octave, Python or Julia)
However, again you don't need to know everything above at the same time, it depends on what topic exactly you want to write paper about.
For example, in applied work, time series analysis is mostly important in macro and cross sectional or spatial analysis in micro with panel data analysis being somewhat important in both.