Amy Damon
Associate Professor
Economics and Latin American Studies
Macalester College
[email protected]


Course Description: This course is an introduction to economic concepts and basic economic theory. The course is split between the study of microeconomics, which focuses on the decision making of individual consumers and firms and macroeconomics with focuses on aggregate level economic questions such as interest rates, government spending, among others. In this course we will develop economic tools to analyze and evaluate public policies, poverty and welfare questions, and other applied topics.

Texts: Principles of Economics, Sixth Edition, by Gregory Mankiw (Mason, Ohio: Thomson South-Western, 2007). There may also occasionally be supplementary readings which will be available through Moodle.


Course Description: In this class we will study the economics of development in low-income countries from a number of perspectives and approaches. We will cover topics such as economic growth, income and resource inequality, poverty, nutrition, rural and urban labor markets, credit markets, and land markets as they relate to development. This course will take both a theoretical and empirical approach to development problems, allowing students to get their hands dirty working with datasets from low-income countries, and applying economic theory to problems of development. While policy questions are not the central theme of this course, we will, of course, keep an eye toward the relevance and applicability to policy of the topics we cover.


Course Description: This class will examine food distribution, production, policy, and hunger issues from an economics perspective. It explores and compares food and agriculture issues in both industrialized and developing countries. Basic economic tools will be applied to provide an analytical understanding of these issues. Topics such as hunger and nutrition, US farm policy, food distribution, food security, food aid, biotechnology and the Green Revolution, the connection between food production and health outcomes, as well as others related themes will be explored in depth throughout the semester. We will be collaborating with a local CSA farm to learn about agricultural production in the US.