Master's Degree in Economics and Finance: Economics Program

Program Director


Marta Reynal-Querol

PhD, London School of Economics

ICREA-UPF and Barcelona GSE

Deputy Director


Eulàlia Nualart

PhD (Probability Theory), Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

UPF and Barcelona GSE

The Barcelona GSE Economics Program prepares students for technically demanding jobs and doctoral programs.

The Economics Program's dual theoretical and empirical approach gives students an excellent grounding and deep understanding of the field's foundations and applications. Students will learn how to use powerful analytical and quantitative tools, and they will design and conduct an independent master's project. 

Specialized elective courses

The Economics Program course list is broad enough to offer students specialized training in a number of areas, such as: 

  • Macroeconomics with a focus on monetary and fiscal policy
  • Microeconomics
  • Political Economy
  • Labor and Public Economics
  • International Economics
  • Development Economics
  • Business and market organization
  • Behavioral and Experimental Economics
  • Financial Economics

Jump to course list

95% placed within six months of graduation

In the three most recent cohorts of the Economics Program, 95% of graduates were hired for jobs related to the Master's Degree or gained admission to a PhD or other post-graduate program.

Some examples of first placements after completing the Master's include:

  • Accenture − Data Analyst − Munich, Germany
  • Bloomberg − Data Analyst/Researcher − London, United Kingdom
  • European Central Bank (ECB) − Trainee in Monetary Policy Strategy Division − Frankfurt, Germany
  • Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) − Research Fellow − Washington DC, United States
  • KPMG − Financial Risk Management Consultant − Barcelona, Spain
  • United Nations (UN) − Consultant − Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona − PhD Student − Barcelona, Spain
  • Universitat Pompeu Fabra − PhD Student − Barcelona, Spain

Jump to career outlook 

Program schedule: 

The course offer displayed is for the current academic year (2020-21). Course offer is subject to change.

In the Fall term, students are required to take the following brush-up courses:

Term 1 (September - December)

Course Title Credits Professor(s)
Econometric Methods I 6 Geert Mesters
Macroeconomics I 6 Manuel García-Santana
Microeconomics I 6 Joan de Martí

Term 2 (January - March)

Students may choose between the following courses (18 credits):

Course Title Credits Professor(s)
Macroeconomics II 6 Danilo Guaitoli
Luca Fornaro
Microeconomics II 6 Joan de Martí
Econometric Methods II 6 Albrecht Glitz
Alessandro Tarozzi
Foundations of Data Science 3 Omiros Papaspiliopoulos (TBD)
Development Economics 6 Gianmarco León
Alessandro Tarozzi
Political Economy 6 Maria Petrova
Ruben Durante
Business Economics * 6 Benito Arruñada
Mircea Epure
Behavioral Decision Making I: Attention, Experience and Influence * 6 Gaël Le Mens
Mikhail Spektor
Business Analytics for Operations and Marketing * 6 Helena Ramalhinho
Topics in Applied Economics I: Gender Economics * 3 Libertad González
Topics in Macroeconomics IV: Monetary Economics * 3 Jordi Galí

* Courses offered by the MRes-UPF (subject to specific course requirements and schedules permitting)

Term 3 (April - June)

Course Title Credits Professor(s)
Master Project 6 TBA
Choose 18 credits from the following courses:
Experimental Economics 6 Rosemarie Nagel
Econometric Methods III 6 Gergely Gánics
Industrial Organization 6 Rosa Ferrer
Christian Michel 
Sandro Shelegia

Labor Economics

6 Joan Monràs
Topics in Economic Growth and Development 3 Luigi Pascali

Behavioural Decision Making II: The Psychology of Economics Decisions *

6 Daniel Navarro
Current Issues in Economics 3 Jan Eeckhout

Environmental Economics: Climate Change *

3 Humberto Llavador
Topics in Applied Economics II: Public Economics * 3 Rodrigo Carril

Topics in Macroeconomics V: International Macroeconomics *

3 Fernando Broner

Topics in Macroeconomics VI: Topics in Macrofinance I *

3 Victoria Vanasco
Vladimir Asriyan
Topics in Macroeconomics VII: Topics in Macrofinance II * 3 Andrea Caggese
Alberto Martín
Topics in Applied Economics III: Topics in Economic Growth and Development Part II * 3 Luigi Pascali
Ruben Durante
Topics in Finance: Empirical Corporate Finance * 3 Javier Gómez Biscarri

* Courses offered by the MRes-UPF (subject to specific course requirements and schedules permitting)

Master's degree awarded

Upon successful completion of the program, students will receive a Master's Degree in Economics and Finance awarded jointly with Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF).

All Barcelona GSE Master's 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”).

Quality indicators

Career outlook

What skills and knowledge will I acquire in this program?
  • Solid command of analytical and quantitative economics
  • Knowledge of a wide range of specializations in different fields of economics
  • Competence in both theoretical and empirical approaches, from foundation to application and policy
  • Expert subject knowledge in writing and discussion of graduate-level economics
  • Facility with tools necessary to successfully pursue a top PhD in economics
Who will benefit from this program?
  • Graduate students in economics, mathematics, or engineering
  • Junior analysts or professionals from the workforce looking for a postgraduate degree with advanced tools in quantitative economics
  • Aspiring PhD students looking for a rigorous master program in economics

Student profile in more detail

Will this program prepare me for a PhD in Economics?

The Economics Program provides a solid foundation for both professional and academic career paths.

Around 61% of recent graduates have used the Economics Program as a terminal Master’s degree that qualifies them for competitive, technically demanding jobs in the professional world.

Around 39% of recent Economics Program graduates have chosen to continue with more graduate or postgraduate study at top institutions all over the world. Some do so immediately after completing the Barcelona GSE Master’s. Others choose to get one or more years of work experience, such as a central bank traineeship, before pursuing a PhD.

Are there opportunities for PhD study at the Barcelona GSE?

There are two PhD programs in the Barcelona GSE community: the UPF PhD Program at Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) and the International Doctorate in Economic Analysis (IDEA) at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB). 

While these PhD programs are organized jointly with the Barcelona GSE, they each have their own distinct admissions processes.

UPF PhD Program

The main point of entry to the UPF PhD program is the Barcelona GSE PhD Track Program. The PhD Track Program is Year 1 of the UPF PhD.

Students in the Barcelona GSE Economics Program with outstanding performance in their courses may have the opportunity to apply and be admitted to the UPF PhD before finishing the Economics Program. Those students will be asked to apply for admission to the UPF PhD at the beginning of the second term of the Economics Program. Admission will be decided in March. Admitted students will need to follow two years of coursework to move to the PhD research and dissertation phase.

See UPF PhD program structure

UAB PhD Program (IDEA)

Entry to the IDEA PhD program is through the IDEA Master in Research. Barcelona GSE students can visit the IDEA website to learn more about the admissions process, which is the same for Barcelona GSE students and external applicants.

Which PhD programs have admitted Economics Program graduates?

Barcelona GSE master's graduates have gone on to enter some of the most prestigious and competitive doctoral programs in the world, including:

  • Athens University of Economics and Business
  • Australian National University
  • Bocconi University
  • Bologna University
  • Bonn School of Economics
  • Boston University
  • Columbia University
  • European University Institute
  • Harvard University
  • LMU Munich
  • London Business School
  • London School of Economics (LSE)
  • Paris School of Economics
  • Princeton University
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • Sapienza University of Rome
  • Tilburg University
  • Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
  • Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (organized with Barcelona GSE)
  • Universitat Pompeu Fabra (organized with Barcelona GSE)
  • Universitat de Barcelona
  • University College London (UCL)
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Wyoming
  • University of York

See a more complete list of PhD programs

Who hires Economics graduates?
  • Consulting Firms
  • Financial Services
  • Government & Authorities
  • International Organizations / Non-profits
  • Research & Academic Institutions
  • Other Industries

Examples of recent Economics placements:

  • Accenture − Data Analyst − Munich, Germany
  • Bloomberg − Data Analyst/Researcher − London, United Kingdom
  • Cambridge Economic Policy Associates (CEPA) − Junior Economist − London, United Kingdom
  • Compass Lexecon − Analyst − Paris, France
  • European Central Bank (ECB) − Trainee in Monetary Policy Strategy Division − Frankfurt, Germany
  • European Central Bank (ECB) − Traineeship − Frankfurt, Germany
  • Frontier Economics − Analyst − London, United Kingdom
  • Goldman Sachs − Macro Research Internship − London, United Kingdom
  • Inter-American Development Bank − Research Fellow − Washington DC, United States
  • J.P. Morgan − Junior Economics − London, United Kingdom
  • JPAL − Policy and Research Analyst − Lima, Peru
  • KPMG − Financial Risk Management Consultant − Barcelona, Spain
  • OECD − Traineeship − Paris, France
  • Oxford Economics − Graduate Programme − London, United Kingdom
  • The Brattle Group − Research Analyst − London/Brussels, United Kingdom
  • UBS − Investment Banking Analyst − London, United Kingdom
  • United Nations (UN) − Consultant − Montevideo, Uruguay
  • University of Zurich − Research Assistant − Zurich, Switzerland

Alumni career paths in more detail



Economics Student Profile 2019-20

84 students from 25 countries (85% international)

Most represented countries this year: 

  • Italy (14)
  • Spain (13)
  • Turkey (8)
  • Germany (6)
  • United Kingdom and United States (5 each)

Most common undergraduate backgrounds:

Economics and Finance



Economics alumni career paths

An overview of Economics career paths for recent cohorts (Class of 2017, 2018, 2019)

  • More than half (61%) enter or return to the professional work force
  • 39% continue their education in a PhD or other post-graduate program
  • Most common professional industries:
    Consulting, Financial Services
  • Cities with the most Economics alumni:
    Barcelona, London, Frankfurt, Paris, Washington, Luxembourg
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    Martin Aragoneses '15

    Research Assistant
    Originally from
    Currently living in
    Cambridge, MA
    United States
    A month after I started working for Prof. Finkelstein, she sent me to the field to get a better understanding of the interventions we are studying...Seeing the people we were helping out with our program and hearing their testimonials was really touching. It reassured me why I want to do empirical research for a living!
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    Jennifer Köhler '15

    Graduate Student, LSE
    Originally from
    Currently living in
    United Kingdom
    The Economics Program at Barcelona GSE has provided a great foundation for my MRes/PhD work. I highly value the rigorous training in quantitative methods, which has proved essential for my own research, as well as the input from all the teachers and professors. In fact, my PhD topic is based on an idea I had for a project at Barcelona GSE, and I am very grateful for all the support I have received for it.
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    Kryštof Krotil '14

    Originally from
    Czech Republic
    Currently living in
    United Kingdom
    From the first week I joined RBB Economics, I have been working on a multibillion dollar merger of two major orthopaedic companies. Until now I have spent most of the time with clients’ transaction data, working mainly on switching analysis, the purpose of which was to determine closeness of competition between the merging parties.
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    Matias Antonio '13

    Junior Professional Associate
    Originally from
    Santiago del Estero
    Currently living in
    Washington, DC
    United States
    My responsibilities in the Latin American and Caribbean Economic Policy area range across pretty much all macroeconomic subjects that are related to policy. One of the projects I am working on right now is macroeconomic monitoring. For this project, I produce a bi-weekly briefing on the current situation across the continents. I am also linked to the El Salvador economic team, so I go on missions to assess the economic situation. All of the Economics master courses at Barcelona GSE are useful for this type of work. The ideas behind the models we studied provide a strong conceptual framework that helps guide policy and tells us where to look for vulnerabilities in the economy.
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    Master Program in Economics

    Marcos Casarin '12

    Originally from
    Rio de Janeiro -
    Currently living in
    United Kingdom
    After working with applied macroeconomics, I can say that all the theory I learnt at Barcelona GSE has provided me with the ability to produce high-quality economic analysis in the real world.
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    Angelo Martelli '11

    PhD Candidate
    Originally from
    Currently living in
    United Kingdom
    The BGSE Economics master was certainly one of the most challenging years in my life. It was a tough reminder that nothing comes as a gift and that the initial difficulties can be overcome only through hard work and long hours. The BGSE lecturers' experience empowered my framing of the economic concepts, while the toolkit I acquired and its continuous refinement enabled me to discern the real essence of each model. With its rigorous curriculum, the BGSE master was a fast track to the frontier of Economics and definitely set me apart when I joined the PhD program at the LSE.
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    Patricia Gómez-González '09

    Assistant Professor
    Originally from
    Currently living in
    New York, NY
    United States
    The year at the Barcelona GSE influenced my career a lot. My research interests are close to many of the topics that researchers at the Barcelona GSE work on and related to several classes I took during the master. During the master program, I was introduced to many of the modeling techniques I currently use for my research. I am still in touch with several of my professors of that year and talk to some of them about my work.