SHEB750 Introduction to Development Economics


Development Economics is an exciting and fast-growing field in economic science because it shows how economic analysis can help us understand the major topics of the 21st century - poverty and inequality, globalization and trade, the success and failure of economies in different regions of the world.

The unit introduces students to the basic concepts, theory and tools of development economics; to the various structural and functional dimensions and effects of economic growth, as well as the economic, demographic, social, environmental, and especially commercial aspects of development.

The main objective of the course is to acquaint students with the modern research area of development economics and to create knowledge, skills and competence for analysis of the opportunities and the risks associated with the various problems in the broad field of development economics – on a macroeconomic level in terms of state policy and on a microeconomic level - as a basis for making adequate corporate management decision-making.

In addition, through practical classroom work assignments and scheduled seminars, the Introduction to Development Economics course puts an emphasis on the status, prospects and challenges of the social and economic development of developing and underdeveloped regions and economies.

The course uses modern teaching aids - interactive presentations, use of various multimedia and online content, group discussions, simulations.

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Business Studies (Joint programme with The University of York)


Asst. Prof. Elena Spasova, PhD
Assoc. Prof. Eduard Marinov, PhD

Course Description:


Students who complete this course:

1) will know:

• the basic theories and models for economic growth and economic development;

• current understanding and ideas in the field of development economy;

• the factors, causes and main instruments to combat inequality, poverty and other major developmental problems;

2) will be able to:

• identify and analyze the impact of different policies on economic development;

• evaluate the dynamics and key trends in the global economy in terms of growth and development;

• formulate and substantiate their own positions on the development polices at national and international level.

Students are required to have the following knowledge and/or skills:

• Microeconomics

• Macroeconomics

Full-time Programmes

Types of Courses:

Language of teaching:


  1. Introduction to Development Economics. Economic development indicators. Economic growth and economic development.
  2. Characteristics of emerging and underdeveloped economies. Differences in the development paths of high- and low-income economies. Global divergence and convergence.
  3. Theories of economic growth and their applicability to underdeveloped economies. Classical and neoclassical theories of growth, endogenous theories of growth.
  4. Poverty, inequality and economic development. Definition and indicators of well-being, poverty line and indicators of poverty. Definition and indicators of inequality. The effects of inequality on economic growth.
  5. Sustainable development - concept and measurement. Environment and economic development.
  6. Institutions and economic development. New institutional economy. Mechanisms of institutional change. Corruption and effects on the rate of development.
  7. The role of the financial and credit market for economic development - financial systems in developed and developing countries.
  8. International investment and financial institutions and their role in economic development. International Capital Movement - Effects on Development.
  9. International trade, industrialization and development strategies. Import-substitute and export-oriented growth.
  10. The place of developing and underdeveloped economies in global trade. Trade liberalization and industrialization. South-North division in international trade.
  11. Seminar: Emerging and Developing Economies Today: Economic Development in Africa, Latin America and Asia - Trends, Problems, Prospects.


Main reading:

• Michael P. Todaro; Stephen C Smith. Economic Development. 12th Edition, 2017.

• Alain de Janvry and Elisabeth Sadoulet. Development economics : theory and practice. Routledge, 2016.

• Monique Kremer, Peter van Lieshout and Robert Went (eds.). Development policies in a globalized world. Amsterdam University Press, 2009.

Complementary literature:

• Handbooks of Development Economics. Dani Rodrik and Mark R. Rosenzweig (eds.), Elsevier, volumes 1-5, 1988-2010.

• Dwight H. Perkins, Steven Radelet, David L. Lindauer, Steven A. Block. Economics of Development. W. W. Norton & Company, 7th edition, 2012.

• Debraj Ray. Development economics. Princeton University Press, 1998.

• Gerard Roland. Development Economics. Routledge, 2016.

• Subrata Ghatak. Introduction to Development Economics. 3rd Edition, 2005.

• Yujiro Hayami and Yoshihisa Good. Development Economics: From Poverty to Wealth of Nations. 3rd Edition, Oxford University Press, 2005.

• Michael Tribe, Frederick Nixson and Andy Sumner. Economics and Development Studies. Routledge, 2010.

• Banerjee, A. and E. Duflo. 2011. Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty. New York, NY: Public Affairs.

• Durlauf, St. and Ph. Aghion (eds.). 2005. Handbook of Economic Growth, Vol. 1A: 473–552. Amsterdam: North Holland, Elsevier.

• Goldin, I. 2018. Development: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

• Taylor, J.E. and Lybbert, T.J. 2015. Essentials of Development Economics. University of California Press.