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Anno accademico 2023/2024

Codice attività didattica
Umakrishnan Unnikrishnan Kollamparambil (Titolare dell'insegnamento)
Corso di studio
Master's Degree Course in Economic analysis and policy
1° anno
Secondo semestre
SSD attività didattica
SECS-P/01 - economia politica
Tipologia esame
Scritto ed orale

Sommario insegnamento


Obiettivi formativi

The objective of the course is to go beyond the process of economic growth and provide an in-depth holistic understanding of the concept of development and well-being, with special focus on COVID-9 and its developmental impact.


Risultati dell'apprendimento attesi

This course will equip the student to understand the process and factors behind economic growth, development and subjective wellbeing; identify and measure issues relating to developing countries like poverty, and inequality; synthesize the conceptual and policy linkages between migration and economic development and; health and social capital.



This course is broadly divided into three sections. The first part reviews the growth process and its relationship with development. Developmental issues particular to the African continent including the curse of resources, foreign aid, and role of the State will be explored.  

Part two of the course explores the theoretical advances in measuring development and well-being through an overview of current debates and recent empirical applications. Emerging measures of development such as poverty, inequality, health, subjective wellbeing and social capital will be analyzed in the South African context. Attempt will be made to explore some of these issues from a gender sensitive perspective.

Part three of the course focuses on the rural-urban divide within developing countries, focusing on migration and the developmental impact of rural institutions and policies like land, and credit market.


Modalità di insegnamento

The core text book for the course is Development Economics by Debraj Ray (Princeton University Press, 1998).  This will be supplemented by some chapters of The Elusive Quest for Growth by William Easterly (MIT Press, 2001). In addition, the course will draw heavily from journal articles. Students can access the course website on Ulwazi (Canvas) for the lecture videos, slides and course materials. There will be a weekly class interaction session at a pre-scheduled time. The information given on the course outline is subject to change in the event of circumstances beyond the control of the lecturer.


Modalità di verifica dell'apprendimento

Take home test: 35%,  Essay: 20%, Final take home assessment: 45%


Attività di supporto

Not planned

Testi consigliati e bibliografia

Anno pubblicazione:  
Princeton University Press, 1998

Lecture 1. Introduction: Some facts about development. Overview of the course. 

Impact of Covid 19 on South African society

Ray, Ch. 1-2 Easterly, Ch. 1

Wave 3 report is expected by March.

Lectures 2 & 3. Growth: theories and evidence. Ray, Ch. 3-4 & 9  Easterly, Ch. 2-3, 89

Mankiw, N. Gregory, David Romer, and David Weil. (1992). "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth", Quarterly Journal of Economics, 107, 407-438.

Banerjee, A, "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," Quarterly Journal of Economics, 107 (3), pp. 797-817. 

Kremer, M., "The O-Ring Theory of Economic Development" Quarterly Journal of Economics, 108 (3), pp. 551-575, 1993. 

Krueger, Alan and Mikael Lindahl. (2001). "Education for Growth: Why and For Whom?"Journal of Economic Literature, 39 (4), 1101-1136.

Budlender & Brathaug (2002) “Calculating the Value of unpaid labour”StatsSA 2002/01

Hall and Jones (1999), "Why do some Countries Produce so much more Output per Worker than Others?" Quarterly Journal of Economics, vol. 114 (1), pp.  83-116.

 Acemoglu, J. Robinson and S. Johnson (2001),"The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation" ,   American Economic Review.

 Glaeser E., Rafael La Porta, Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes and Andrei Shleifer (2004)"Do Institutions Cause Growth?", NBER Working Paper 10568.

 Nunn, Nathan (2009) " Slave Trade and the origin of mistrust in Africa" NBER Working Paper, 2009.

 Rodrik, D., Arvind Subramanian, and Francesco Trebbi, (2002) "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions over Geography and Integration in Economic Development,"

 Sachs, Jeffrey (2003)"Institutions Don't Rule: Direct Effects of Geography on Per Capita Income,", NBER Working Paper 9490.

 Bloom, David, and Jeffrey Sachs. (1998). "Geography, Demography, and Economic Growth in Africa," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, 2, 207-295.

Lecture 4 : 24 March The Curse of Natural Resources: Bardhan & Udry, Vol I Ch.12

"Addressing the Natural Resource Curse: An Illustration from Nigeria" by Sala-i-Martin and Subramanian (2003), NBER Working Paper 9804.

"The Curse of Natural Resources" by Jeffrey Sachs and Andrew Warner (2001), European Economic Review, vol. 45, pp. 827-838.

"Institutions and the Resource Curse" by Mehlem, Moene and Torvik (2006), Economic Journal, vol. 116, pp. 1-20.

"Power Struggles and the Natural Resource Curse," F. Caselli (2006), MIT Working Paper.


Lecture 5: 31 March Foreign Aid and Conditional Lending :Easterly, Ch. 2  “Macroeconomic Management of Foreign  Aid” Edited by Isard et al, IMF.

 "Aid, Policies and Growth" by Craig Burnside and David Dollar (2000), American Economic Review, vol. 90 (4), pp. 847-68.

 "New Data, New Doubts: A Comment on Burnside and Dollar (2000)," Easterly, Levine and Roodman (2003), NBER Working Paper 9846.

 "Aid, Policies and Growth: Revisiting the Evidence," by Burnside and Dollar (2004), World Bank Policy Research Paper 3251. 

 "IMF and Economic Growth: The Effects of Programs, Loans and Compliance with Conditionality" by Axel Dreher, World Development, vol. 34(5), 2006, pp. 769-788.

Lectures 6 & 7 Poverty & Inequality: concepts and measurement Ray, Ch. 6-8 Easterly, Ch. 4

Deaton, Angus. (2005). "Measuring Poverty in a Growing World (or Measuring Growth in a Poor World)," Review of Economics and Statistics, 87(1), 1-19.

Banerjee, Abhijit, and Esther Duflo. (2003). "Inequality and Growth: What Can the Data Say?" Journal of Economic Growth, 8(3), 267-299.

Klasen Stefan (2000) Poverty and Deprivation in South Africa, Review of Income and Wealth , Series 46 No.1.l

 Leibrandt, Finn, Woolard (2012) Describing and Decomposing Post-apartheid inequality in South Africa, Development Southern Africa.

 Kingdon & Knight (2006) Subjective well-being poverty vs. Income poverty and capabilities poverty? Journal of Development Studies, Vol. 42, No. 7, 1199-;1224. 

 Ismail Z & Uma Kollamparambil (2015) “Youth Unemployment Duration and Competing Exit States: What hides behind long spells of Black youth unemployment in South Africa?” African Development Review, Vol. 27, No. 3, 2015, 301-;314.

 Kollamparambil, Uma & Aarifah Razak (2016) ‘Trends in Gender Wage Gap and Discrimination in South Africa: A comparative analysis across races' Indian Journal of Human Development, Vol 10, Issue 1.

Lecture 8 (Prof F Booysen): Health, Social capital and Development

 Carpiano, R.M. (2006). “Toward a neighborhood resource-based theory of social capital for health: Can Bourdieu and sociology help?” Social Science & Medicine 62, 165-;175.

 Paldam, M. (2000). “Social Capital: One or Many? Definition and Measurement.” Journal of Economic Surveys, 14(5), 629-653.

 Powell, K., Wilcox, J., Clonan, A., Bissell, P., Preston, L., Peacock, M. & Holdsworth, M. (2015). “The role of social networks in the development of overweight and obesity among adults: a scoping review.” BMC Public Health, 15, 996.

 Robison, L.J., Schmid, A.A. & Siles, M.E. (2002). “Is Social Capital Really Capital?” Review of Social Economy, 60(1), 1-21.

 Scheffler, R.M. & Brown, T.T. (2008). “Social capital, economics, and health: new evidence.” Health Economics, Policy and Law, 3, 321-;331.

 Seferiadis, A.A., Cumming, S., Zweekhorst, M.B.M. & Bunders, J.F.G. (2015). “Producing social capital as a development strategy: Implications at the micro-level.” Progress in Development Studies, 15(2), 170-;185.

 Story, W.T. (2013). “Social capital and health in the least developed countries: A critical review of the literature and implications for a future research agenda.” Global Public Health, 8(9), 983-;999.

 Umberson, D. & Montez, J.K. (2010). “Social Relationships and Health: A Flashpoint for Health Policy.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 51(S), S54 -;S66.

 Woolcock, M. & Narayan, D. (2000). “Social Capital: Implications for Development Theory, Research, and Policy.” World Bank Research Observer, 15(2), 225-249.

Lecture 9: Economics of Happiness/Subjective wellbeing

Easterlin RA (1973) Does money buy happiness? Public Interest 30:3-;10. 

Easterlin RA (1995) Will raising the incomes of all increase the happiness of all? J Econ Behav Organ 27:35-;47.

Posel, D.R. and Casale, D.M. 2011. Relative standing and subjective well-being in South Africa: The role of perceptions, expectations and income mobility. Social Indicators Research. 104(2), pp.195-223.

Kollamparambil U (2020) Happiness, Happiness Inequality and Income inequality in South Africa, Journal of Happiness Studies, 21.

Kollamparambil, U. and Mathentamo, Q.  (2020). Subjective wellbeing inequality in South Africa 2008-;14: An unconditional quantile decomposition analysis, Development Southern Africa,  37 (6), 1012-1032.  10.1080/0376835x.2020.1799757

Kollamparambil U (2020) Subjective wellbeing inequality between cohabiting partners: Does a household Kuznets curve exist? Journal of Happiness Studies.

Kollamparambil U (mimeo) Intergenerational mobility of Subjective wellbeing in South Africa.

Lecture 10 An introduction to Gender and Feminist Economics Prof Dori Posel

Chant, S. and C. Sweetman. (2012) “Fixing Women or Fixing the World? ‘Smart Economics,’ Efficiency Approaches, and Gender Equality in Development.” Gender & Development 20(3): 517-529.

* Elson, D. (1993) “Gender-aware analysis and development economics”. Journal of International Development 5(2): 237 -; 247.

* Folber, N. and Nelson, J.A. (2000) “For love or money -; or both?” Journal of Economic Perspectives 14(4): 123 -; 140.

Himmelweit, S. (2002) “Making visible the hidden economy: the case for gender-impact analysis of economic policy.” Feminist Economics 8(1): 49-70.

Special issue of Agenda: Gender and the economy in post-apartheid South Africa: Changes and challenges (2019). Volume 33, no. 4.

* Casale, D. and Posel, D. (2005) “Women and the economy: How far have we come?” Agenda 64: 21-29.

Hatch, M. and Posel, D. (2018) "Who cares for children? A quantitative study of childcare in South Africa". Development Southern Africa 35(2):267 -; 282.

Ntuli, M. and Wittenberg, M. (2013) Determinants of black women’s labour force participation in post-apartheid South Africa. Journal of African Economies 22(3): 347-374.


* Posel, D. (2014) "Gender inequality". In Bhorat, H., Hirsch, A., Kanbur, R, and Ncube, N. (eds.) Oxford Companion to the Economics of South Africa. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 303-310.

Posel, D. and Rogan, M. (2012) "Gendered trends in poverty in the post-apartheid period, 1995 -; 2006". Development Southern Africa 29 (1): 97-113.


Lecture 11 : Rural-Urban Migration Ray, Ch. 10

Posel, D. (2010). Households and labour migration in post-apartheid South Africa. Studies in Economics and Econometrics, 34 (3), 129-;141.

Mulcahy, Kirsten and Kollamparambil, Uma (2016) “ Subjective well-being Impact of Rural -;Urban migration in South Africa”, Journal of Development Studies, 52, No. 9.

Kollamparambil, Uma (2017) Impact of internal in-migration on income inequality of receiving areas: A district level study of South Africa, Journal of Development Studies.

Lecture 12 : Rural Land and Credit markets. Ray, Ch. 11, 12 & 14

Banerjee, Abhijit, Paul Gertler and Maitresh Ghatak (2002), "Empowerment and Efficiency: Tenancy Reform in West Bengal," Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 110 (2), pp 239-280. 

Burgess, Robin And Rohini Pande(2003), "Do Rural Banks Matter? Evidence from the Indian Social Banking Experiment," mimeo, Yale.

Morduch, Jonathan (1999), "The Microfinance Promise," Journal of Economic Literature, Vol. 37 (4), pp. 1569-;1614.

Mosley Paul and Hulme (1998) "Microfinance enterprise: Is there a conflict between growth and poverty alleviation", World Development, Vol6 No.5

Muchnick J & Kollamparambil, Uma (2015) "Determinants of Microfinance Repayment Performance: A Study of South African MFIs" Journal Of Economic & Financial Sciences, Vol 8(2).



This course will be held in Johannesburg.

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