This course provides an overview of macroeconomic theory and the role and effects of governmental macroeconomic policy. We apply these ideas to understand some of the current debates about the US macroeconomy such as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and possible policy responses to it. We discuss different and competing theories try to understand what is at stake in the debate between rival schools of thought and examine data to evaluate their relative merits. The first half of the course studies the long-run behavior of the macroeconomy (such as gross domestic product [GDP] and its growth the role of financial and labor markets and the open economy). The second half studies business cycle fluctuations in general and the policy responses to the current COVID-19 pandemic in particular.
Harvard Division of Continuing Education