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MRes/PhD in Economics (2024 Entry)

Economics students at the University of Warwick

Applications for 2024 entry are now open and will close on 15th January 2024.

Find out more about our Economics Master of Research (MRes/PhD).

The MRes/PhD course is an integrated Master of Research in Economics, from which students progress to PhD in Economics. You will be taught and guided by top class researchers, at the forefront of their field, and will receive comprehensive support for your entry to the job market. Warwick's Department of Economics, ranked 1st in the UK (The Good University Guide 2023) and 22nd the World (The QS World University Subject Rankings 2023), will provide you with exceptionally high-quality training, skills and techniques in advanced economics.

*Please note that, for Visa purposes, this is considered a Taught course which means that students requiring Student Visa sponsorship will not be able to bring dependants to the UK unless they are government sponsored.

Course overview

Our comprehensive 2+4 MRes/PhD research programme offers a unique training opportunity in advanced economics. We aim to provide you with professional training in modern economics, including tools and techniques of analysis at the forefront of the discipline, and opportunities to apply this in extended research.

We offer a two-week Mathematics and Statistics pre-sessional programme, which starts two weeks before the official start of term. The pre-sessional course will provide a thorough grounding in the mathematical techniques required throughout the programme and attendance is highly recommended, although not compulsory.

Warwick Economics was ranked 2nd in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 and 99% of our research was deemed to be world leading or internationally excellent. We have five separate seminar series running on a weekly basis (term time), with invited eminent speakers from around the world. MRes and PhD students are welcome and encouraged to attend. 

Skills from this degree

You will focus on developing a range of important skills, including:

  • Advanced knowledge and understanding of comparative and interdisciplinary approaches.
  • Ability to identify and process data to produce original results.
  • Knowledge of contemporary theoretical and empirical debates and research outcomes in your chosen specialised areas of economics.
  • Sound ability to formulate hypotheses and viable explanations based on received ideas and in combination with other comparable data.
  • Ability to critically evaluate existing models with a view to formulating revised or new models.
  • Understanding the role of the researcher in policy making and policy analysis.

General entry requirements

Minimum requirements

First Class undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in a related subject and/or Distinction at Master’s level. A GRE General Test quantitative section score would be useful but not essential. Scores of around 800/166 are typical for previously successful applicants.

English language requirements

You can find out more about our English language requirementsLink opens in a new window. This course requires the following:

  • Band B
  • IELTS overall score of 7.0, minimum component scores of two at 6.0/6.5 and the rest at 7.0 or above.

International qualifications

We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications.

For more information, please visit the international entry requirements pageLink opens in a new window.

Additional requirements

There are no additional entry requirements for this course.

Our research

99% of the Department's research was rated world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*) in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF), placing the Department second in the UK.

Areas for PhD supervision 

We have active research groups in:

  • Applied Economics
  • Economic History
  • Development Economics
  • Economic Theory
  • Econometrics
  • Education
  • Industrial Economics
  • International Economics
  • Labour Economics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Political Economy
  • Public Economics
  • Experimental and Behavioural Economics Modules

Core modules

Year One

Advanced Microeconomic Theory

The module aims to develop your skills and knowledge of, microeconomics necessary for a career as an academic economist and in all areas where advanced research skills in economics are required. Specifically, it aims to teach you the ability to understand, appreciate, and ultimately contribute to, frontier research. You will develop a thorough understanding of the main techniques of modern microeconomic theory; a detailed knowledge of recent research in key areas of microeconomic theory and be able to apply these to develop microeconomic models in your own research.

Advanced Macroeconomic Analysis

In this module you will focus on the development of the skills and knowledge of advanced macroeconomics, which are fundamental for a career as an academic economist. You will develop a thorough understanding of modern macroeconomic theory; and the ability to read and understand ground-breaking research in macroeconomics published in top journals. For those intending to pursue a career in macroeconomics, the course provides the basic tools required to pursue their own research agenda.

Advanced Econometric Theory

In this module you will focus on another important area of advanced research skills: advanced econometrics. You will develop an advanced understanding of the main aspects of modern econometric theory and techniques used in research at the forefront of the field.

The Practice of Economics Research

The principal aim of this module is to serve as a bridge between theoretical material taught in other year-one core modules and the practical application of theory and methods to concrete research questions, informed by other considerations (such as institutional structures). The focus is on development of the skills needed to conduct research, including identifying and formulating research questions informed by current debates both in academia and outside it (for example in public policy). You will learn to identify appropriate sources and methods, deal with the practical aspects of deploying those methods, and communicate/disseminate research results effectively.

By comparison with the other core modules taken by students in the first year of the MRes programme, this module is distinctive in its emphasis on learning by example and on learning by doing.

Year Two

MRes Dissertation

This module aims to provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate your ability to autonomously investigate and carry out novel research in your chosen area of economics, at PhD level.

Optional modules

Optional modules can vary from year to year. Example optional modules may include:

  • Macroeconomics
  • International Economics
  • Development Economics
  • Advanced Economic Theory
  • Economic History
  • Political Economic Theory and Experiments
  • Empirical Political Economy
  • Labour Economics
  • Advanced Econometrics
  • Industrial Organisation and Data Science


You will be taught by leading academics in the major fields of Economics using a combination of lectures and classes.

You will also be heavily involved in developing your own research under the supervision of one of our leading academics in the form of your MRes dissertation.

Class sizes

Lectures and classes typically have 15-25 students in year one.

In year two class sizes vary between 3 and 15 students.

Typical contact hours

In year one you will have 9 hours of lectures per week and 4-5 hours of seminars. In year two, teaching is mainly on a seminar basis (6 hours per week).

Your timetable

Your personalised timetable will be complete when you are registered for all modules, compulsory and optional, and you have been allocated to your lectures, seminars and other small group classes. Your compulsory modules will be registered for you and you will be able to choose your optional modules when you join us.

Pre-Sessional Advanced Mathematics

You are recommended to attend the pre-sessional course in Advanced Mathematics which will be taught in the two weeks before the University’s main term begins. The course is designed to ensure that your maths knowledge and skills are at the standard required for you to succeed on the MRes/PhD course.


Assessment is a mixture of class tests, exams, presentations, and referee reports and the MRes dissertation (maximum of 20,000 words).

Progression Criteria

If you pass the MRes at a sufficiently high level of performance, you will then proceed to the PhD programme. You will have a maximum of four years to complete the PhD, but are expected to be ready to go on the job market at the beginning of your fourth year and to be ready to submit your thesis in the following spring. We aim to provide you with professional training in modern economics, including tools and techniques of analysis as well as knowledge, and an opportunity to apply this in extended research. Our objective is to produce doctoral students who are able to pursue driven careers at the highest level in academia, government agencies or consultancies.

Find a supervisor

Please do not write to members of faculty regarding supervision or entry to the PhD, as we do not recruit PhD students in this way.

All of our PhD students must either complete the MRes Economics at Warwick or demonstrate they have completed a two-year MRes at another institution (with a syllabus closely matching that taught at Warwick) and achieved excellent results.

Tuition fees

Tuition fees are payable for each year of your course at the start of the academic year, or at the start of your course, if later. Academic fees cover the cost of tuition, examinations and registration and some student amenities.

Find your research course fees

Fee Status Guidance

We carry out an initial fee status assessment based on the information you provide in your application. Students will be classified as Home or Overseas fee status. Your fee status determines tuition fees, and what financial support and scholarships may be available. If you receive an offer, your fee status will be clearly stated alongside the tuition fee information.

Do you need your fee classification to be reviewed?

If you believe that your fee status has been classified incorrectly, you can complete a fee status assessment questionnaire. Please follow the instructions in your offer information and provide the documents needed to reassess your status.

Find out more about how universities assess fee status

Additional course costs

As well as tuition fees and living expenses, some courses may require you to cover the cost of field trips or costs associated with travel abroad.

For departmental specific costs, please see the Modules tab on the course web page for the list of core and optional core modules with hyperlinks to our Module Catalogue (please visit the Department’s website if the Module Catalogue hyperlinks are not provided).

Associated costs can be found on the Study tab for each module listed in the Module Catalogue (please note most of the module content applies to 2022/23 year of study). Information about module department specific costs should be considered in conjunction with the more general costs below:

  • Core text books
  • Printer credits
  • Dissertation binding
  • Robe hire for your degree ceremony

Departmental Scholarship 

The majority of students offered a place on the programme will also be offered a Departmental Scholarship consisting of a fee waiver and a maintenance award. You are not required to apply for a scholarship at the time of application for the MRes/PhD programme. 

Departmental Scholarship

The majority of students offered a place on the programme will also be offered a Departmental Scholarship consisting of a fee waiver and a maintenance award. You are not required to apply for a scholarship at the time of application for the MRes/PhD programme.

Scholarships and bursaries

Scholarships and financial support

Find out about the different funding routes available, including; postgraduate loans, scholarships, fee awards and academic department bursaries.

Living costs

Find out more about the cost of living as a postgraduate student at the University of Warwick.

Your career in Economics

Most of our Economics PhD job market candidates are successful in finding academic placements at prestigious universities across the world.

The most recent cohort of students secured academic positions as Lecturers, Assistant Professors or Post-doctoral Fellows at the following Higher Education Institutions: Bocconi University in Milan, the European University Institute in Florence, University College Dublin, University of Bristol, Ashoka University in India, Stockholm University, Tilburg University and the University of Tübingen.

Some of our PhD graduates choose jobs in non-academic fields which require advanced research skills, for example, central banks, regulators, think tanks or international organisations, including:

  • The Institute for Government
  • Government Economic Service
  • The United Nations
  • The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
  • World Trade Organisation
  • International Monetary Fund
  • The World Bank Group

Economics at Warwick

We are committed to rigorous training of the next generation of economists in the tools and techniques of the discipline, producing cutting-edge research that has wide and deep impact on society and the economy, and creating strong collaborations. Our work has established Warwick Economics as one of the leading centres of economic research internationally.

We hold regular live chats for prospective students and offer holders. Please see the live chat schedule for Economics.

Visit the Economics website to find out more

Our Postgraduate courses

Academic Resources Portal

The Department of Economics have put together a portal of academic resources recommended by faculty members for anyone who may be considering studying economics at postgraduate level.

Economics Academic Resources Portal

How to apply

Please do not write to members of faculty regarding supervision or entry to the PhD.

We do not recruit PhD students in this way. All of our PhD students must either complete the MRes Economics at Warwick or demonstrate they have completed a two-year MRes at another institution (with a syllabus closely matching that taught at Warwick) and achieved excellent results. If you are interested in direct entry to the PhD, please apply for the MRes/PhD in the first instance. If you are selected for an interview, you should at this stage make clear to the admissions committee that you are seeking direct entry to the PhD.

Applications for 2024 entry will open on 1 November 2023 and will close on 15 January 2024.

How to apply for a postgraduate research course  

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