The doctoral program in economics provides students with a sophisticated and critical grounding in economic analysis, so that they can contribute creatively to research, teaching, and social policy. This commitment has gained the department an international reputation as a center for research in innovative approaches to economics.

The entering graduate class consists of ten to twelve students each year. The focus of the department, as well as its policy of maintaining small classes and promoting close contact between faculty and students, has permitted the program to attract talented students on a par with other highly selective graduate programs in the country.

The graduate program in economics is primarily designed for doctoral candidates, but a master of arts in economics can be awarded along the way.