Program director


Jaume Ventura

CREI, UPF, and Barcelona GSE

Fernando Broner

CREI, UPF, and Barcelona GSE

International Trade, Finance, and Development is a demanding master program that combines rigorous analytical training with a focus on policy.

We give students a research-based view of subjects crucial to understanding today's market, designed to equip graduates with the core theoretical and analytical roots needed to solve the toughest challenges of today's globalized economies.

What can be done to avoid financial crises? How can growth in the least developed countries be accelerated? How can wealth be distributed equitably and sustainably? This program will allow students to acquire a thorough knowledge of the conceptual and empirical tools of modern Economics applied to international trade, finance, and development.

Tailor your program to fit your interests and goals

The program starts in the first term with a set of courses on economic growth and development, international trade and finance, and quantitative methods. In the second and third terms, students can choose from a wide array of courses and tailor their learning experience to their interests. Some students chose to specialize in development, others in international trade and finance, while others opt instead for a more balanced approach that combines training in both areas.

Students complete an independent study project by the end of the academic year, allowing them to specialize in a policy topic of their choice. They also attend a series of policy lessons delivered by international experts.

Study with experts from academia and international organizations

The master's faculty consists of internationally renowned scholars who have previously held academic positions at MIT, NYU, Chicago, Berkeley, Stanford and Cambridge. They have also worked or held consulting appointments at international organizations, including the World Bank, the IMF, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the European Central Bank.

Alumni choose from a world of career paths

Past ITFD graduates have found employment in international organizations, government agencies, central banks, financial institutions, research and consulting firms, and NGOs.

Several past graduates have decided to pursue further studies and have joined prestigious PhD programs in Europe and the United States, including the London School of Economics, Stanford University, and Harvard University.

What skills and knowledge will I acquire in this program?
  • Gain a thorough understanding of the economics of international trade, finance and development
  • Build an in-depth knowledge of the analytical tools of modern economics
  • Receive extensive training in econometric and statistical methods
  • Acquire the ability to apply theoretical and empirical tools to address pressing policy issues
Who will benefit from this program?
  • Graduates with a strong quantitative background from all fields, particularly Economics, Business, Engineering, Political Science
  • Junior professionals from private firms, research centers, central banks, financial institutions, the civil service, and NGOs
  • Aspiring PhD students looking for a solid foundation in the theory and empirics of international trade, finance, and development
Who hires ITFD graduates?
  • Banking and Financial Institutions
  • Research Institutions and Consulting Firms
  • Non-government Organizations (NGOs)
  • International Organizations
  • Governmental and Regulatory Agencies

Examples of recent ITFD professional placements:

  • Asian Development Bank
  • Bank of America (Merrill Lynch)
  • Bank of Spain
  • Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR)
  • Center for Poverty Analysis (CEPA)
  • European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
  • European Central Bank (ECB)
  • European Investment Fund (EIF)
  • Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT) 
  • Innovations for Poverty in Action (IPA)
  • Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
  • International Growth Center Bangladesh 
  • International Trade Centre (ITC)
  • Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
  • Overseas Development Institute (ODI)
  • Reserve Bank of Australia
  • United Nations (UN)
  • World Bank
  • World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)
  • World Trade Organization (WTO)

Examples of recent ITFD PhD program placements:

  • Goethe University Frankfurt
  • Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies
  • Harvard University
  • Humboldt University Berlin
  • Lombardy Advanced School of Economics (LASER)
  • London School of Economics (LSE)
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • Stanford University
  • Texas Tech University
  • Universitat de Barcelona
  • Université Paris-Dauphine
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Lausanne
  • University of Mannheim
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst

Download results for ITFD 2015



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    Yajna Sanguhan

    Research Associate
    United Kingdom
    My research looks at gender and poverty in the context of post-war Sri Lanka. Understanding the gendered dimensions of poverty not only requires superior data but a better use of the currently available data.
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    Joana Carreiro

    Research Assistant
    My first position after the ITFD master was a traineeship in the Monetary Policy Divison of the European Central Bank. At the ECB, we were eight Barcelona GSE students from our cohort, and I believe that this confirms how well our Barcelona GSE profile fits the requirements of institutions such as the ECB.
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    Bea Tanjanco

    Research Assistant
    My work with the World Bank group falls under the Trade and Competitiveness global practice and my current project there concerns Philippine logistics and export competitiveness.
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    Henrik Sigstad

    PhD Candidate in Economics
    I believe the most important way the ITFD program impacted me was by maturing my way of thinking about Economics. It taught me about the interaction between theory and empirics, and how to reason precisely around economic problems.
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    Bernard Yaros

    Associate Economist
    One of the most interesting moments in the job was when the Swiss National Bank unexpectedly abandoned its exchange-rate ceiling, which sent the franc soaring in value. From one month to the next, I had to completely change our forecast for Switzerland.
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    Max Bode

    Research Fellow
    "ITFD prepared me very well for my current job, as I apply the skills I learned in class every day. Also, outside the classroom, the faculty at the Barcelona GSE never hesitated in taking time to give career advice or share their personal take on the world of economics."

Program schedule: 

In the Fall term, program students are required to take a mathematics, statistics and a computer tools brush-up course.

A master project, which will be supervised in regular meetings with an advisor, will allow each student to put their knowledge into practice and improve their writing and exposition skills.


Fall Term: Core Knowledge (September - December)

Course Title Credits Professor(s)
Economic Growth and Development 6 Antonio Ciccone
International Trade and Finance 6 Jaume Ventura
Quantitative and Statistical Methods I 6 Libertad González

Winter Term: Applications (January - March)

Course Title Credits Professor(s)
Quantitative and Statistical Methods II 6 Christian Brownlees
Albrecht Glitz
Stephan Litschig
All students must earn 15 additional credits by enrolling in either (i) five short courses; or (ii) three short courses and one long course.
List A: Short courses (3 credits each)
Money and Exchange Rates 3 Fernando Broner
Sovereign Debt and International Financial Architecture 3 Fernando Broner
International Trade and Growth 3 Alejandro Cunat
Firms, Technology and Trade Policy 3 Gino Gancia
Giacomo Ponzetto
The Economics of Migration 3 Albrecht Glitz
The Rise of the Global Economy 3 Joachim Voth
List B: Long courses (6 credits)
Development Economics 6 Alessandro Tarozzi
Macroeconomics II 6 Danilo Guaitoli
Luca Fornaro

Spring Term: Advanced Topics and Policy (April - June)

Course Title Credits Professor(s)
Policy Lessons 3 Simon Evenett
José García-Montalvo
Master Project 6 Fernando Broner
Jaume Ventura
All students must earn 12 additional credits by choosing among the following courses:
List A: Short courses (3 credits each)
Systemic Risk and Financial Crises 3 José-Luis Peydró
Topics in Economic Growth and Development 3 Xavier Sala-i-Martin
Topics in Macro V: Firms, Misallocation, and Aggregate Productivity * 3 Manuel García-Santana
Topics in Macro VI: Monetary Economics * 3 Jordi Galí
Topics in Macro VII: International Finance * 3 Fernando Broner
Topics in Macro VIII: Open Economy Macro * 3 Luca Fornaro
Topics in Applied Economics III: Development * 3 Gianmarco León
Topics in Applied Economics IV: Labor * 3 Libertad Gonzalez
Topics in Applied Economics V: Economics of Inequality and Redistribution * 3 Maria Petrova
Ruben Enikolopov
Topics in Applied Economics VI: Economics of Information * 3 Maria Petrova
Ruben Enikolopov
List B: Long courses (6 credits each)
Econometric Methods III 6 Eleonora Granziera
Experimental Economics 6 Rosemarie Nagel
Political Economy 6 Maria Petrova
Ruben Enikolopov
Empirical Methods in Finance 6 Javier Gil-Bazo
Filippo Ippolito
Javier Gómez Biscarri
José-Luis Peydró

* Starred courses are advanced PhD courses and require permission from the instructor and the ITFD Director.

Master degree awarded

Upon successful completion of the program, students will receive a Master Degree in Specialized Economic Analysis awarded jointly with Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) and Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF).

All Barcelona GSE master degrees have been recognized by the Catalan and Spanish Education authorities within the framework of the Bologna Process (in Spanish, “Master Universitario o Master Oficial”). Indicadors de qualitat