Master of Arts in International Economics and Finance (MIEF)

Known for International Economics
Connections for Life
Prepare to Lead
Learn from International Economics Experts

Timothy Geithner, former US Treasury secretary and 1985 graduate, delivered the 2012 commencement address.

Our unique cohort structure and small class sizes foster a strong sense of community amongst MIEF students.

Rigorous training in international economics provides MIEF students with the analytical tools critical to addressing today's complex global issues.

Our faculty have a passion for teaching and are acclaimed for their accessibility, research and expertise.

Study with World-Class Thinkers
Gain a Career Building Edge
Current Student Profile
Summer Term
Fall Semester
January Intersession
Spring Semester
Capstone Course
Cost of Attendance
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Master of Arts in International Economics and Finance (MIEF)

This challenging 11-month, full-time master's degree program is recognized as a STEM degree, and is offered at the Washington, DC campus. The Master of Arts in International Economics and Finance (MIEF) positions early- to mid-career professionals to excel in rigorous economic and financial analysis roles. The curriculum prepares students to understand advanced economic theories, master professional quantitative economics and econometrics skills, and assess a wide range of international economic and financial scenarios. Students in this cohort-based program take courses together that increase in complexity throughout the year.

Study with World-Class Thinkers

The Students

The student body represents approximately 75 nations, promoting a diversity that lends richness and vitality to academic life.

The Faculty

Our faculty have a passion for teaching and are acclaimed for their accessibility and expertise. Students in the MIEF program are given tremendous opportunity to engage and interact one-on-one with world renowned experts in the International Economics program.

Recent Speakers

  • Timothy Geithner, former US secretary of Treasury (Class of 1985)
  • John Lipsky, former managing director, International Monetary Fund
  • Carmen Reinhart, professor of Economics, Harvard University
  • Min Zhu, deputy managing director, International Monetary Fund

Gain a Career-Building Edge

Economics knowledge, analytical abilities and the capacity to apply economic analysis to real-world problems give our students a distinct professional advantage. Whether you are interested in pursuing a career in international finance, public policy, economic development, or research, the MIEF program provides students with a firm grasp of the theory and tools of international economics and finance.


Career Services

Students in the MIEF program work with faculty in the International Economics department and Career Services professionals to help them explore careers and set goals and develop a network of professional contacts. This is accomplished through:

  • Group and individual assessments and counseling to help students develop focused career goals
  • Job-hunting workshops and employment fairs 
  • Professional skills courses designed to strengthen specific professional skills, such as presentation techniques and consulting skills 

A Global Alumni Community

As a graduate, you will join a 18,000-strong lifetime community of friends and colleagues around the world. Our accomplished alumni are leaders in government, business, journalism, nonprofit groups and multilateral organizations in more than 140 countries.


Common Paths

Students graduating from MIEF often pursue careers in:

Private Sector Public Policy Sector Research
Banks Central Banks Further Graduate Studies
Commercial Investing Finance Ministries
Consulting Firms Multinational International Financial Institutions Think Tanks
Development Banks Trade Ministries

Summer 2017 Incoming Student Profile
  • Number of Incoming Students
  • Average Age
  • Average Years of Work Experience
  • Countries Represented
  • Male/Female's %
41%(M), 59%(F)
  • Non-U.S. %
  • U.S. Minority
  • GPA (middle 50% range)
  • GRE Verbal (middle 50% range)

152-159 (55-82 percentile)

  • GRE Quantitative (middle 50% range)

157-167 (67-93 percentile)

  • GMAT Verbal (middle 50% range)
  • GMAT Quantitative (middle 50% range)
  • TOEFL (middle % range)


The MIEF degree provides you with a rigorous curriculum that is designed to meet your professional and personal goals. The MIEF degree is conferred upon successfully completing fourteen courses totaling 54 credit hours. In designing your academic plan, you are required to take the core MIEF courses, but you also choose a combination of International Economics electives.

The MIEF program has fourteen required courses, including three quantitative methods courses, five economics electives, skills workshops and the capstone course.

The MIEF program begins with a six-week summer term starting in mid-July, the MIEF then follows the school's regular fall and spring semesters with the addition of a January intersession and capstone course. 




Summer Term

Quantitative Methods I

6 weeks
Fall  Quantitative Methods II* 
International Finance
International Trade
Economics Elective
Economics Elective
Applied Research Project**
14 weeks
January Intersession Skills Workshops
2 weeks
Spring Quantitative Methods III
Economics Elective
Economics Elective
Economics Elective
13 weeks
Capstone Policy of Research Project

*Quantitative Methods II meets the first 7 weeks of the Fall semester.
** Applied Research Project meets the second 7 weeks of the Fall semester. 

Summer Term

SA.310.701  Macroeconomics 
This course examines how the interplay between the incentives of the private sector and those of the public sector shapes macroeconomic outcomes. The focus is on how that interplay shapes the theory and practice of monetary policy. After a brief review of macroeconomic concepts, the course formalizes the notion of credibility of monetary policy and then examines the issues of inflation targeting, unconventional monetary policies, and changes in macroeconomics in response to the financial crisis of 2008. Overall, the student learns to develop an independent opinion of how theoretical ideas are applied to macroeconomic issues. 

SA.310.700  Microeconomics
Microeconomics is our entry-level graduate course intended to start you on your way to analyzing economic phenomena on your own. Students will learn how consumers, workers, investors, and firms make decisions while interacting with one another efficiently through markets. They will also learn about the different ways that markets can fail and some possible ways to correct these market failures. A central goal of this course is for students to understand the effects of incentives on the behavior of these agents and thereby on economic welfare. Topics include:

  • Consumer choice and demand
  • Production and cost
  • Firms and market structure
  • Economic policy and social welfare
  • Market failure

Together with Macroeconomics and Quantitative Methods, it constitutes the foundation for all other MIEF courses. The course will be taught somewhere between advanced undergraduate and first- year PhD level. We will use graphs, algebra, and differential calculus for analysis. Microeconomics is built up cumulatively. Lectures often serve as the foundation for subsequent lectures. 

SA.310.770  Quantitative Methods I: Econometrics
This is an introductory master’s level econometrics course with multiple objectives. Students who do well in this course will be able to:

  • Read critically relatively sophisticated quantitative/econometric analysis
  • Carry out basic econometric/function fitting analysis
  • Understand and explain the connection between assumptions made when using regression analysis and the output from statistical packages. This will involve the use of matrix algebra. The elements of matrix algebra required will be taught in this course. 
  • Use the Stata statistical package 

Basic calculus will be used in a limited way and all required matrix algebra will be taught as part of the course. Understanding sampling distributions with confidence intervals and hypothesis testing applications will be assumed to have been covered in a prior statistics class but will be reviewed during this course

Fall Semester Required Courses
SA.310.724  International Finance
This course covers two related areas in international economics: international financial markets and the macroeconomics of open economies. Specific topics include (nonexhaustively): formal intertemporal model of consumption, savings, capital accumulation, and the trade balance; balance of payments concepts and relationships; debt dynamics; exchange rates and the foreign exchange market; macroeconomic asset-pricing; real exchange rates; interest rate parity and capital flows; macroeconomic policy under flexible and fixed exchange rates; monetary union; Swan and Salter models of internal and external balance; history and evolution of the international monetary system. 

SA.310.707  International Trade
This class examines some basic theoretical models of international trade and discuss their empirical relevance in explaining the observed patterns of trade between nations.The second half of the course will discuss a variety of trade policy issues -- the gains from trade, the use of alternative trade policy instruments and the organization of the international trade system. 

SA.310.713  Quantitative Methods II: Econometrics
(First 7 weeks of the Fall Semester)
This is a masters’ level course in econometrics that builds upon Quantitative Methods I and introduces a number of new tools.  The main objectives of the course are to improve the students’ conceptual understanding of various econometric techniques as well as provide them with an understanding of how to implement them.

SA.310.790  Applied Research Project
(Second 7 weeks of the Fall Semester)
Being a successful professional involves providing reliable answers to practical questions. Obtaining reliable answers benefits from two components. First, one needs a theoretical framework used to organize the data. Second, one needs a suitable statistical method to summarize the implications and properties of the data so as to develop an intelligible answer to the question at hand. Unfortunately, there is no “cookbook” available that will turn an amateur into a successful professional. So this course adopts a case-study approach by focusing on two important questions: How can one measure the degree of international capital mobility and how can one determine the extent to which a particular the exchange rate for a particular currency is misaligned? In addition to becoming familiar with these two subjects, students develop the habit of asking two important questions for professional life: How do you know and what is the alternative? A successful applied research project integrates these two questions into providing reliable answers.

Fall Electives 
Two (2) Fall Semester electives required

SA.310.744 Economic Development 
The objective of this course is to understand why some countries are poorer than others, in particular why some countries appear to be permanently caught in the so-called “middle income trap”. It will provide an in-depth analysis of the barriers to economic development and of the reasons that explain why these barriers persist. We begin with an overview of development and growth, how economic growth is measured, and what the distribution of world income may reveal about different development patterns. Next, we turn to economic growth models, the building block to understanding the determinants of economic development. Once we have established the basic building blocks, the determinants of growth and development will be covered in detail, from financial sector issues to trade and institutional development. Finally, we will analyze the trends in income inequality and how inclusive growth may be achieved with the appropriate policies. The goal of the course is to provide a strong theoretical and empirical foundation from which students can critically discuss and analyze current issues in economic development. By the end of the course, students should be well-prepared to participate in current policy debates, clearly articulating their opinions based on substantive arguments. Knowledge accumulated during the course is cumulative, and it is important that students make an effort to attend every class. Lectures will serve as the basis for subsequent material.
SA.310.722 Financial Decision-Making 
Introduces quantitative tools and framework of financial decision-making. Examines present-value techniques, pricing of financial instruments, trade-off between risk and return, portfolio theory, capital budgeting, financial ratio analysis, behavior of financial markets, capital structure decisions, corporate cost of capital issues, option theory and risk management. Approach is rigorous and analytical, and goal is to provide students with conceptual understanding of the ideas of financial theory as well as the quantitative methods necessary to pursue careers involving financial decision-making. 

SA.310.726 International Money and Banking 
The course begins with the seemingly obvious question of What is Money: commodity, fiat, artificial?  I continue with an analysis of financial intermediation with emphasis on private banks’ structure and behavior; I cover institutional and analytical issues.  I then turn with the transition from privately issued money to publically issued money.  Because the factors that give credibility to domestic money are absent in the international setting, the course continues by examining how the varying degrees of credibility of monetary arrangements have shaped the role played by money in the international economy: Dollarization, the role of banks in transmitting the US financial crisis of 2008 to other countries, currency areas, dominant currencies, and digital currencies.  The final segment examines the rise of the Renminbi in the international monetary system. 
SA.310.754 Public Finance /Cost – Benefit Analysis 
The course provides the tools to conduct a cost-benefit analysis. It has three parts. The first part develops the microeconomic foundations of cost-benefit analysis: supply, demand, and equilibrium. The second part develops the statistical tools necessary to conduct the empirical analysis: discounting, expected value, and uncertainty. The third part combines the microeconomics and statistics in the cost-benefit analysis. The course provides a somewhat encyclopedic set of tools to address a wide range of problems. Both graphical and mathematical techniques will be employed. You will apply these tools in a cost-benefit study, where you identify a question to be answered, gather appropriate data, conduct the empirical analysis, and present the results in a term paper.

Intersession Skills Workshops

Two (2) credit hours required

SA.310.803     Business Strategies for Global Banks
This is an abridged version of the full semester course of the same name. The objective is to help students learn the basics of the global financial services industry and to point them in the right direction for possible future employment in Banking, Consulting or related industries. It will focus on three areas: Basics of Business Strategy, Fundamentals of Global Banking and Business Case Analysis. The class will be divided into several teams, each tasked with analyzing and presenting a business school case about a global bank. For more information on course content, refer to the syllabus for Business Strategies for Global Financial Institutions.
SA.310.805.01     EViews
This set of hands-on tutorials will give you the basic tools needed to conduct economic and statistical analysis in EViews.  The goal is to familiarize students with the econometric capabilities offered by the EViews software package as an aid in coursework, end-of-year research projects and to provide marketable skills for future careers in economics, finance and consulting.  Students will learn how to import data into EViews, learn some of the graphing capabilities of the software, as well as go over basic econometric techniques that can be utilized in EViews.  Time permitting; we will discuss de-trending and other techniques commonly used in business cycle analysis.
SA.310.803     How to Get a Job in Strategy Consulting
This workshop goes over strategy consulting and case interview practice (essentially, how to perform well on consulting interviews).  We will begin by reviewing business concepts: strategy, economics, finance, operations, marketing, communication, and problem solving.  We will learn the following case frameworks: profit improvement, revenue growth, market entry, asset investment, mergers and acquisitions, competitive threat, and capacity expansion.  We will practice several cases in these areas together as a class and in small groups.  We will go over math strategies for doing calculations by hand (and in your head).  And finally, we will talk about the “fit” interview.  The final assessment will involve a group case interview in teams of 4-5 with the professor.  

SA.310.802     Macro Measurement
This course reviews the measuring methodology of several concepts that are widely used in macroeconomics.  First, how exactly is the data for nominal and real GDP assembled? Second, how are the prices of a consumption basket aggregated into the consumer price index? Third, how are the data measuring the net external position assembled and what are the implications of alternative valuations schemes for analysis of the sustainability of external balances.  Fourth, how are effective exchange rates measured and what are differences in methodology across reporting agencies?  Finally, the course documents the balance sheet of central banks and how they are used a policy tool going forward.
SA.310.808.01     MATLAB
This set of hands-on tutorials will give you the basic tools needed to conduct economic and statistical analysis in MATLAB.   We will begin by introducing the powerful matrix capabilities of MATLAB, as well as loops using the for command.  We will discuss the fzero and fsolve commands for solving systems of equations.  These are very important for solving the steady states of Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) macro models.  Students will learn how to import data into MATLAB and how to fully utilize the graphing capabilities of the software.  We will also study how to de-trend data using Band-Pass and HP filtering, and how to compute autocorrelations, cross-correlations and graph impulse responses in MATLAB, all key components of business cycle analysis.  Time permitting, we will walk through the steps needed to solve a first-order approximation of a basic Real Business Cycle (RBC) model in MATLAB. 
SA.310.801     PcGive
This course shows how to use PcGive for both developing econometric models and testing hypotheses of interest.  PcGive focuses on modeling dynamic responses in either single or simultaneous models.  These responses can be estimated with OLS, IV, and FIML along with test results regarding the properties of the residuals and the constancy of the parameters.  In addition, this software provides impulse responses, dynamic and static model simulations, and forecasts’ confidence bands.
SA.310.804     Portfolios & Investing
Use finance skills to estimate the behaviors of the various assets classes that large investment portfolios commonly invest in. Discuss issues of strategic and tactical asset allocation within a portfolio and study the process of combining these different asset classes together to create a desired investment portfolio. Discuss issues of long run performance and payout rules as well as methods for measuring portfolio and manager performance. 
SA.310.807     R
This workshop provides an introduction to analyzing data in R.  It covers how to load and clean data, run regressions and make plots, solve a system of equations, and perform basic simulations using R.  R is a free software environment for statistical computing and graphics used by many economists, governments, and private-sector firms (especially consulting firms). 
SA.310.806     Stata
This workshop will introduce Stata and illustrate how to use the software for practical applications, with attention to manual coding. We will cover basic applications - such as simple OLS regressions and charting - as well as binary dependent variable modelling, time-series features, and panel data techniques. The theoretical concepts underpinning empirical analyses will also be reviewed.

Spring Semester
Choose one (1) of three (3) Quantitative Methods III courses

SA.310.772  Cross-Sectional and Panel Data Econometrics
This course examines identification issues arising in the analysis of cross-section and panel data.  Students will learn how to approach important research questions in international trade, finance, and development by analyzing data using regression analysis. While there will be some overlap in the topics covered in Quantitative Methods I and II, we will cover those topics at a deeper level.  We will study the econometric theory underlying estimation techniques, but the focus will be on rigorously applying these tools. Students will use STATA heavily to analyze datasets. We will also read many academic papers that apply the methods covered in the class and critically analyze their execution of these methods.

SA.310.774  Empirical Economic Forecasting and Modeling
This course is an introduction to practical empirical economic modeling and forecasting. It focuses on the methodology, practice, and implementation of econometric modeling and forecasting with macroeconomic time series. The course's first part (empirical model building) considers data properties, including integration and cointegration; dynamic specification, including error correction models; and model evaluation and design, including computer-automated model selection algorithms and impulse indicator saturation. The course's second part (empirical economic forecasting) focuses on the roles of forecasting, including in policymaking; the generation and evaluation of forecasts; sources of forecast error; and robustification and improvement of forecasts. Throughout, the course includes discussion of the underlying theory, live data-based presentations of substantive empirical analyses, and hands-on learning in class. The latter two aspects help demonstrate the approach to econometric modeling and forecasting and address empirical questions as they arise. Examples with single-equation and multiple-equation models using different countries' data motivate and illustrate the concepts involved. 

SA.310.773  Macro and Financial Time Series Econometrics
This course will cover time series analysis with a particular emphasis on aspects of time series analysis that are employed in the empirical analysis and modeling of financial and macroeconomic time series.  The course will cover theoretical aspects of time series analysis but will focus on applied and empirical aspects of time series analysis.  This course is quantitative and will build upon concepts that have already been learned in previous econometrics courses such as OLS estimation, finite sample and asymptotic properties of OLS and MLE estimators, and hypothesis testing.
Spring Electives
Choose three (3) economics electives

SA.310.743 Advanced Topics in Trade Theory
A rigorous seminar on international trade and commercial policy covering a broad set of policy-oriented topics. Covers both theory and applications, but emphasizes tools and analytical techniques rather than case studies. Overall goal is to develop a broad conceptual understanding of ongoing issues in international trade and familiarity with the analytical techniques used by economists in developing policy recommendations. 

SA.610.736     Advanced Topics in International Political Economy
This advanced course aims to fully integrate your knowledge of international economics with international relations, and bridge the gap between the two disciplines. The course aims to immerse students into the latest and cutting-edge approaches to the study of international political economy (IPE). The main goal is to apply those various theories to important historical and contemporary empirical issues in IPE. The first part of the course examines the main theoretical concepts in and methodological approaches to political economy, emphasizing the dynamic interplay between the domestic and international economy on the one hand, and domestic and international politics on the other. We will study both the classic IPE literature as well as more recent theoretical developments, including the comparative and domestic approaches that have become increasingly prominent in the academic literature. The second and third parts of the course address the politics of international trade and international monetary relations respectively, while the final part of the course delves into the origins, causes, aftermath, and consequences of the most recent international economic and financial crises.

SA.380.763     Case Studies in International Financial Transactions
This course will introduce participants to the process by which different types of issuers—firms, states, funds, and others— raise capital across borders. We will study the international financing process by examining the opportunities and challenges that issuers and their investors face at different stages—birth, growth, maturity, and decline—of their organizational lives. The course is intended to bridge theory and practice through the use of case studies. Some of these cases will be standard HBS-type, in which much of the relevant information is prepackaged for the participant’s ease of use. Other cases will be based on original source documents and require participants to dig for relevant data and insights.
SA.310.723 Creating Markets in Infrastructure
This applied microeconomics course lays out ways to introduce competition across all infrastructure sectors (telecom, energy, transport, water).  A deep dive into electricity markets brings out the core challenges, covering: market structure regulation and market design for operations and investment in generation as well as transmission and distribution; competition policy; the integration of renewables into electricity grids and the concept of smart grids.  Access pricing principles for telecommunications systems conclude with an overview of the net neutrality debate. 
SA.380.725 Credit Markets & Credit Risk
The course is geared toward students becoming conversant on the contemporary global bond marketplace and its growing segment of structured securities. Designed to provide sound grounding on basic debt securities, traditional/new bond products, risk management and basic investment strategies in global markets. Focuses on fundamental theories necessary to value fixed-income instruments, including asset-backed securities, and understand their risks. Seeks to familiarize students with different types of fixed-income securities/markets and to introduce tools utilizing pricing and valuation in preparation for future exposure to more complex instruments, higher levels of borrowing and investment decision-making. 
SA.310.721 Financial Derivatives & Risk Management
Introduces options, futures and swaps presented in Corporate Finance. Reviews basics of valuation methods and institutional context in which derivative contracts are traded. Describes use of basic derivative instruments as “building blocks” to construct more complex positions that increase, decrease or transform exposure to specific financial risks. Focuses on how such combinations of derivatives may be used to implement overall risk-management strategy and introduces techniques to manage financial derivatives portfolios, including value-at-risk and credit mitigation. Uses case discussions and culminates in oral presentation of a group project. 
SA.310.734 Global Macro Modeling
Focuses on issues relevant to understanding the world economy: modeling and forecasting of exchange rates, modeling the sustainability of external imbalances, determining the importance of international capital flows and implementing monetary-policy rules. Examines empirical studies in each of these areas by looking at their assumptions, weaknesses and strengths and considering whether there are alternative methods of addressing a given issue. Students learn to develop an independent opinion of how theoretical ideas are applied to policy questions by asking: How much? Does it matter? How do you know?

SA.310.787 Infrastructure Finance and Modeling
This course will use a practical and quantitative approach to understanding infrastructure finance transactions and financial modeling. The goal of the course is to provide an understanding of how the financial structure for an infrastructure transaction is determined from the underlying technical, contractual, and market conditions.
SA.380.722 International Financial Markets
Rigorous introduction to why/how governments, corporations and financial institutions raise funds in financial markets—debt and equity, domestically and internationally. Themes include how financial markets differ from other markets from a public policy and regulatory perspective; innovations in capital-raising techniques; and the changing pattern of risk in financial markets resulting from globalization. Addresses key factors that distinguish financial markets and institutions in OECD nations from those in developing countries. 

SA.310.727  International Financial Organizations: Institutions and Analytical Methods
This course examines the international financial organizations from a variety of perspectives, but with the emphasis on the way macroeconomic analysis is conducted, particularly at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The course will begin with the origins of the international financial organizations (primarily the IMF and the World Bank, also known as the Bretton Woods institutions) and will briefly cover their evolving roles as the international monetary system itself evolved. After introducing necessary analytical concepts on balance of payments and national income accounting and exchange rate regimes, the bulk of the course will focus on how macroeconomic analysis is conducted at the IMF. This will include financial programming, debt sustainability analysis and external balance analysis, as well as other selected topics.  

SA.320.731 Microeconomics of Development
The objective of this course is to analyze the constraints that affect households and policy makers in developing countries and to understand the empirical tools and techniques economists use to analyze these constraints. The understanding of microeconomic foundations of several development problems will be used to discuss policy choices and outcomes in different contexts. We will rely on empirical and theoretical microeconomic studies to analyze behavior under different types of market failures and to evaluate the impacts of policy interventions. Students are required to complete four problem sets involving data analysis in Stata and Matlab/R, one quantitative research paper, and one final exam, in addition to all required readings.
SA.380.761 Multinational Corporate Finance
Covers issues related to both international financial markets and financial decision-making within the international environment. Focuses on understanding and forecasting financial conditions in international markets; identifying, measuring and managing exchange-rate risk; taxation of international income; implications of political risk on project valuation; and cost of capital for international projects. 
SA.310.720 Open-Economy Macroeconomics
Explores open-economy macroeconomics from a theoretical perspective. Emphasis is placed in using simple theoretical models to interpret the real world. Topics include current account determination, the role of the trade balance as a shock absorber, imperfections in international credit markets, the role of non-tradable goods, boom-bust cycles in emerging markets, and fiscal policy.
SA.380.783 Regulation of International Financial Markets
This course examines how the regulation of financial markets affects the behavior of its participants, both in the United States and abroad. The objective of the course is to prepare students who are considering a career involving the financial services industry -- including both market participants and the agencies that regulate or make policy affecting the industry -- to confront the numerous regulatory issues that affect and determine the operations of financial institutions. The central thesis of the course is that a SAIS graduate will not be able to function effectively in or on the periphery of the financial marketplace if he or she does not have a basic understanding of how it is currently regulated and how it is likely to be regulated in the future. The focus of the course will be on how institutions are regulated in the United States but systems in Europe and Asia will also be discussed and contrasted. The final section of the course will cover the pros and cons of various reform proposals currently being considered by the Congress and the EU. Students should have taken International Financial Markets or have an equivalent understanding of the subject matter.
SA.310.713 Risk Analysis & Modeling
This course is a graduate-level introductory course in Monte Carlo simulation as a tool for modeling and risk analysis. The course will focus on understanding the functional nature of the system being modeled, properly framing the analysis, selecting probability distributions to appropriately reflect uncertainty, addressing dependencies between variables, and generating and evaluating simulation results. Students will develop a Monte Carlo simulation model in Excel during the class. 
The two goals of the course for students are (1) to gain exposure to the general ideas and issues associated with risk, modeling, and risk analysis, and (2) to understand the construction process, analytical value, and potential strengths/shortcomings of Monte Carlo simulation models. 
SA.320.735 Topics in Growth and Development
This course is concerned with understanding the factors responsible for the large cross-country differences in per capita income. Reviews basic models of economic growth to explore the roles of factor accumulation and technical progress in cross-country income differences, examines how growth affects poverty and inequality, considers how institutions help shape the policies that affect growth and covers the effects of globalization and foreign aid on economic development. Emphasizes the role of empirical evidence in distinguishing between alternative views of development and informing policy choices. 

Capstone Course

Teams of students apply the knowledge, skills and tools they have learned in the MIEF program to address an international economics issue impacting the public, private or nonprofit sector. Teams present their findings in a detailed presentation to fellow classmates, faculty and outside professionals in mid-June. Examples of topics include current account sustainability, exchange rate exposure, investment case studies, studies on financial markets and growth and debt sustainability studies.

Professional Skills Development

At Johns Hopkins SAIS, we encourage you to focus on your professional development by seeking opportunities that will help you achieve your objectives. By taking our Professional Development Skills courses and participating in career-related internships during your graduate study, you can gain necessary skills and experience to make a successful transition to your chosen area of employment upon graduation.


Many of the school's academic programs and research centers host seminar series throughout the school year. Various topics are explored through lectures and presentations made by a wide array of experts, policymakers and scholars in the field.

Faculty Seminars
Regular International Economics Faculty Seminars are held on Thursday afternoons, where invited professors present and receive feedback on research papers.  These seminars are open to the school's community. You may find a copy of the Seminar Series schedule here.

Student Organizations

Students are very active and involved in many student-led organizations. Students in the MIEF program are welcome to participate in all student organizations.

International Finance and Economics Review (InFER)


  • Articles: 3-4 pages analyzing interesting and current topics related to finance, economics, development, and/or trade. Based on quantitative analysis but discussions focused on results and implications. Please refer to the following example.
  • Op-Eds: 1 page detailing your opinion on an economic or financial issue. Support your arguments with notable papers, research and/or relevant data presented in a table, graph, etc. Please refer to the following example.
  • Essays: 1.5 to 2 pages defending your stance on a certain relevant topic. A qualitative analysis should be the foundation of the article. Please refer to the following example

Submissions and inquiries to

Prior to Attending


Given the intensive 11-month nature of the MIEF program, it is preferred that candidates have an undergraduate degree in economics or a related field with strong analytic skills. Qualifications for application may include the following:

  • BA or BS in Economics or Political Economy from an accredited US college or university or an equivalent international credential with a GPA of 3.0 or higher (especially in economics courses).
  • BS or BA in a natural science or an equivalent technical area from an accredited US college or university or an equivalent international credential with a GPA of 3.0 or higher AND successful coursework in basic economics (microeconomics and macroeconomics) AND at least one upper level economics course; preferably econometrics.
  • A solid academic background in quantitative courses including coursework in calculus statistics and/or econometrics.  This may be at either the college level or the high school level, via AP courses with test score of 4 or higher.
  • GRE Quantitative score of 157 or higher.

Non-Native Speakers of English

All non-native speakers of English must have proven English competence by submitting a TOEFL or IELTS score (see the Admissions page for more information). The TOEFL/IELTS exam requirement may be waived for individuals who have done their undergraduate degree in English in a country where English is an official language.

For Non-US Students

Most non-US students enter the United States using either F-1 student or J-1 exchange visitor visas–student category. Since a student’s academic career can span several years, we encourage you to keep copies of all immigration-related documents related to your stay. This includes copies of your passport, I-20s, DS-2019s, as well as any applications and correspondence submitted to the government for immigration-related benefits, etc.

Estimated Cost of Attendance*

Tuition and Other Mandatory Expenses

  • Full Time Tuition $60,000**
  • Matriculation Fee $500
  • Health Insurance $2,090

Additional Expenses

  • Room $18,626
  • Board $5,500
  • Books and Supplies $1,500
  • Travel Allowance $1,220
  • Personal Expenses $3,670
  • Direct Loan Fees $1,200***

(The section above includes additional costs that students may incur outside of the mandatory program tuition and fees.)

*Based on 11 month calendar
**Subject to change. Tuition will be finalized by the Board of Trustees in May 2015.
***Estimated based on Average debt at SAIS from the 2014-2015 academic year. Loan fees will vary
    based on the amount that you borrow from year to year


Washington, DC

Kelley J. Kornell
Associate Director
Master of International Economics and Finance
1717 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, DC 20036
+1 (202) 663-5790

To receive the latest news and events regarding the MIEF, sign up here.

External Resources

Economics Resources

Data Sources
Stock Prices -
Exchange Rates -

International Economic and Financial Institutions
The International Monetary Fund - IMF
The World Bank - World Bank
Bank of International Settlements - BIS
Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development - OECD

Interesting Links

The Labor Market for Recent Graduates

Johns Hopkins SAIS Library International Economics and Business Research Guide

US Economic and Financial Institutions
The Federal Reserve -  Federal Reserve
US Department of Commerce - Commerce Department
USDC Bureau of Economic Analysis - Bureau of Economic Analysis
US International Trade Commission - International Trade Commission
US Securities and Exchange Commission - SEC