6096 Empirical Methods
Univ.Prof. Dr. Zoltán Novotny-Farkas
Weekly hours
Language of instruction
02/07/22 to 02/28/22
Registration via LPIS
Notes to the course
Subject(s) Doctoral/PhD Programs
Day Date Time Room
Wednesday 03/02/22 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM D4.0.047
Tuesday 03/08/22 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM D4.0.047
Thursday 03/17/22 02:00 PM - 05:00 PM D2.0.334 Teacher Training Lab
Wednesday 03/23/22 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM D4.0.047
Wednesday 03/30/22 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM D4.0.047
Wednesday 04/06/22 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM D4.0.047
Tuesday 04/19/22 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM D4.0.047

This is a course for students admitted to the DIBT, the PhD in International Business Taxation.

This course provides a thorough introduction to the most widely used methods in empirical research in economics and related disciplines. The focus of the course will be on empirical methods used in program evaluation, also known as impact assessment. This is an applied methods course, with equal emphasis on methods and their applications.

The course (a) gives a thorough technical introduction to the methods but emphasizes intuition and practical aspects, (b) shows the methods in action by going over published evaluations, and (c) replicates some of the published evaluation results using original data, check their robustness and dig deeper if possible.

Methods covered in the course include linear regression analysis, matching procedures, instrumental variables, regression discontinuity design, and differences-in-differences analysis.

Learning outcomes

The course provides up-to-date methodological knowledge, together with the corresponding intuition and the related skills in handling software, interpreting results and presenting those results. Students successfully completing this course should be able to assess studies’ ability to gauge causal effects, understand the methodology of an evaluation study, including its fine details, and they should be able to form a well-grounded judgment about its value. They should be able to judge whether the evaluation was carried out in a methodologically sound way given the circumstances, and they should be able to form an educated opinion on how much credibility one should give to its conclusions.

Students who complete this course should be able to design an evaluation study using the methods covered in the course (e.g., Linear regression analysis, Matching, Instrumental Variables, Regression Discontinuity, Differences-in-Differences). They should also be able to perform an impact evaluation analysis using these methods.

Attendance requirements

This is a PI course. 80% attendance is required.

Teaching/learning method(s)

The course will be a mixture of lectures and computer-based exercises.


Besides active participation in classes, students must complete six quizzes and seven lab exercises.

Active participation: 10%

Quizzes: 30%

Lab exercises: 60%

Prerequisites for participation and waiting lists

All students admitted to the DIBT, the PhD in International Business Taxation, are able to participate in this lecture.

1 Author: Angrist, J.D. and Pischke, J.S.

Mostly harmless econometrics: An empiricist's companion.

Publisher: Princeton University Press.
Year: 2008
Last edited: 2021-11-30