About the Department

The Economics Department runs one of the largest and most varied academic programs at UC Santa Cruz. We have one of the largest undergraduate programs (with more than 10,000 enrollments per year and 1,000 declared majors at the end of each year), several joint major programs with other departments, a Ph.D. program, and a professional masters program.

UC Santa Cruz economics majors are among the most popular on campus, serving diverse students with a broad range of interests. We offer programs in economics, business management economics, global economics, and economics combined with mathematics, environmental studies, or latin american and latino studies. Our accounting program is one of the best in Northern California. The five hundred students who graduate from our programs each year pursue a variety of careers often in or near Silicon Valley which is only 30 miles from campus. We also prepare students for graduate work in economics, law, medicine, and business. Our masters students pursue analytical careers in business, finance, accounting, consulting and government, and our Ph.D. students pursue careers in academia, government and research institutions.

The Economics Department is ranked highly in research productivity. The department’s research excellence is focused in three broadly overlapping areas and six specific fields: (1) international economics (international finance, international trade and development), (2) macroeconomics (macro/monetary and international finance), and (3) empirical microeconomics (public/labor economics, experimental/behavioral economics, international trade, and micro development). Unifying all of the research fields is the emphasis on the use of cutting-edge empirical methodology beyond just econometrics. This includes the common use of randomized control experiments, lab experiments, quasi-experimental approaches, computational and simulation methods, big data techniques, and new and innovative administrative data in our research.