Peter Ireland


ECON3379 (link): Financial Economics
(Spring 2024) This undergraduate elective focuses on financial economics, with specific emphasis on asset pricing and the valuation of risky cash flows. After developing and studying the details of consumer decision-making under uncertainty, it uses that general framework as a basis for understanding both equilibrium and no-arbitrage theories of securities pricing, including traditional models like the capital asset pricing model (CAPM) and newer Arrow-Debreu theories.

ECON7720 (link): Mathematics for Economists
(Fall 2023) "Economics studies the efficient allocation of scarce resources." It follows almost immediately from this definition that while verbal and graphical analyses are often helpful too, economists derive their sharpest and most powerful results by setting up and solving constrained (because resources are "scarce") optimization (because allocations should be "efficient") problems. Hence, this course introduces first-year graduate students to variety of techniques for doing just that: setting up and solving constrained optimization problems. Specific methods covered include those based on the Kuhn-Tucker and envelope theorems, the maximum principle, and dynamic programming. Note that since this is a "math for economists course" as opposed to a "course in mathematical economics," its emphasis is not so much on stating and proving theorems but on developing an intuitive understanding of how and why each method works and determining when one particular approach may be easier or more convenient than all others to apply to a specific problem.

EC132 (link): Principles of Macroeconomics
(Spring 2013) This course is one of two introductory courses in economics at Boston College that: (i) are required for students in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring or minoring in economics, (ii) are required for all students in the Carroll School of Management, and (iii) fulfill the Social Science Core requirement. EC131, Principles of Microeconomics, studies how individual households and firms make decisions and how they interact in individual markets. EC132, Principles of Macroeconomics (this course), studies the economy as a whole, to explain how economic events affect many households, firms, and markets simultaneously.

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