Research at the Department

The Department of Economics is one of the leading economic research institutions in Europe. In the Shanghai Ranking, we are ranked first in Germany and 39th worldwide. In the current Tilburg Ranking, the department is ranked 30th worldwide. Our research is funded by renowned institutions such as the DFG or the ERC. The department has a leading role in three research clusters: the Cluster of Excellence "ECONtribute: Markets and Public Policy", the Cluster of Excellence "Hausdorff Center for Mathematics" and the Collaborative Research Center "Economic Perspectives on Societal Challenges". With our research, we want to actively contribute to public debates on central societal challenges and provide impulses for effective political measures. We attach great importance to the training of young academics at the Bonn Graduate School of Economics.

Excellent Research

ECONtribute Exzellenzcluster
© ECONtribute

Cluster of Excellence: ECONtribute: Markets & Public Policy

The Cluster of Excellence ECONtribute conducts research on markets at the interface of economy, politics and society. The aim is to develop a new paradigm for the analysis of markets & public policy. Both are analyzed in terms of goals that go beyond narrow measures of efficiency, such as socially responsible behavior.

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Logo von EPoS  Collaborative Research Center Transregio 224
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SFB: Economic Perspectives on Societal Challenges

The Collaborative Research Center (SFB) addresses three central societal challenges: How can equal opportunities be promoted? How can markets be regulated in view of the internationalization and digitalization of the economy? How can the stability of the financial system be secured?

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© Pixabay_ElisaRiva

Cluster of Excellence: Hausdorff Center for Mathematics

At the Hausdorff Center for Mathematics, economists conduct research primarily on game theory, mechanism design, and information economics.

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Research projects funded by the European Research Council (ERC) demonstrate the diversity of economic research at the department

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© Ryan McGuire

Price Negotiations in Dynamic Markets: Prof. Francesc Dilmé, Ph.D. studies price negotiations in dynamic markets with information differences between the participants.  With his research he wants to contribute to understanding how information is transmitted through prices in decentralized markets, such as real estate and financial markets. He also plans to study the efficiency of these markets and assess the effectiveness of various regulations.

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© Unsplash MD Duran

New Possibilities for Data Analysis: Prof. Dr. Joachim Freyberger from the Institute of Finance and Statistics is developing new statistical methods, especially for the analysis of education and labor supply decisions, as part of his Starting Grant. How can we make the best use of the new possibility of the availability of large data sets and the greatly increased computing power of computers? How can this lead to more reliable conclusions?

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© Pixabay Gerd Altmann

How does our Memory influence Opinions and Expectations?: Prof. Dr. Florian Zimmermann investigates, mainly experimentally, how human information processing and in particular the structure of human memory influences the formation of expectations about economically relevant variables.

When forming opinions and expectations, people often intuitively consult their memory about what knowledge and experience they have on a certain topic. These individual decisions can also have an important influence on macroeconomic developments.

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© Unsplash Joshua Mayo

How do Investment Decisions affect the Overall Economy?: Prof. Dr. Christian Bayer, in his ERC Consolidator Grant, is investigating how portfolio decisions of individual households affect the overall economy.

An example of such a decision is whether one prefers to buy a house, take out a private pension insurance policy or choose a more liquid form of investment - such as a call money account. The aim of the project is to better understand, for example, who benefits from stimulus policies and who does not, and whether the distribution of gains and losses depends on the specific instrument of stabilization policy.

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Is your House a Safe Investment?: This is the question Prof. Moritz Schularick is addressing as part of his ERC Consolidator Grant SAFEHOUSE.

The aim of his research is to understand the long-term development of real estate prices, the distribution of real estate assets and the connection between real estate bubbles and financial crises. The goal is to understand how long-term returns on real estate investments have evolved, for example, compared to the stock market. Other questions include whether rising real estate prices also lead to greater wealth inequality and whether central banks should raise interest rates when real estate markets are too euphoric.


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© Unsplash Dakota Corbin

What influences Women's Family and Career Planning?: Prof. Teodora Boneva, Ph. D. is analyzing women's family and career planning in her ERC Strating Grant.

Her research program aims to investigate how beliefs, preferences, constraints, and social norms influence women's decision to have children. Likewise, she will analyze the motivations for women to return to work after having a child. Boneva will collect extensive data sets from different countries to find out more about individual beliefs and preferences using survey-based methods. The data will be combined with information on the actual number of children, labor market decisions, and individually perceived constraints and social norms.

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Doctoral Program

Bonn Graduate School of Economics

The Bonn Graduate School of Economics offers an English-language doctoral program (Ph.D.) with an integrated Master in Economic Research for students from all over the world.

Current research projects of the BGSE doctoral students

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The Research Training Group 2281 offers a research environment in which doctoral students, experts from the Department of Economics, and external scholars conduct research on the topic of economic inequality.


Research Institutions & Network

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BonnEconLab

The Laboratory for Experimental Economics - BonnEconLab stands for innovative research in experimental economics. The lab supports researchers and students in planning, designing and conducting their experiments.

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© Unsplash Emil Widlund

Macrofinance and Macrohistory Lab

The MacroHistoryLab studies the causes and consequences of financial instability and rising debt, the evolution of income and wealth inequality, and economic history and political economy.

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Transdisciplinary Research (TRA)

Scientists of the Department of Economics conduct transdisciplinary research on the topics  Mathematics, Modeling and Simulation of Complex Systems 15121616 und  
Individuals, Institutions and Societies 16131717.

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briq: Insititute on Behaviour & Inequality

The briq researches human behavior and the causes of inequality in order to contribute to strengthening individual equality of opportunity and social solidarity.

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IZA: Institute of Labor Economics

IZA works on questions about the future of work and provides answers on how employment and social participation can be secured in the long term.

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MPI  for Research on Collective Goods

The Max Planck Institute for Research of Collective Goods focuses its research on applied economics and behavioral law.

Workshops & Seminars

At the department, workshops and seminars on various research areas are offered by the institutes on a regular basis during the semester. To stay up to date subscribe to the Bonn Econ News. Here you will find an overview of the workshops and seminars. However, dates and times may be subject to change.

Please use the links for further information or contact the respective person

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Bonn Econ News

Bonn Econ News is an e-mail newsletter and informs you during lecture hours about all research seminars and workshops during the week.

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