Spring 2022 - ECON 355W D100

Economic Development (4)

Class Number: 3745

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo 4:30 PM – 6:20 PM
    BLU 9660, Burnaby

    We 5:30 PM – 6:20 PM
    BLU 9660, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Apr 21, 2022
    7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
    SWH 10081, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    ECON 103 or 200 and 105 or 205, all with a minimum grade of C-; 60 units.



Analysis of theories of economic development. Consideration will be given to the requirements of successful development, to aspects of international co-operation, and to procedures of economic planning. Problems of emerging countries and models of various developing economies will be studied. Students with credit for ECON 355 or ECON 455 may not take this course for further credit. Writing/Quantitative.


This course is an introduction to the diverse field of Development Economics. The aim is to examine various explanations for why some populations, across space and time, are much poorer than others. We will cover both theoretical foundations and empirical evidence. Note that this course is designated writing intensive (W), and as such, will require the completion of written assignments on a regular basis.


We begin with defining, measuring, and comparing ‘development’ outcomes. To organize our ideas, we briefly overview classic theories of growth and discuss issues of multiple equilibria and poverty traps. We explore the role of geography, economic institutions, and political institutions. We then turn attention to specific issues, including financial markets and randomized controlled trials. Time permitting, we may examine further topics including culture, conflict, women and fertility, household decision-making, and labour markets.



  • Weekly Writing Assignments 35%
  • Major Writing Assignment 20%
  • Weekly Quizzes 35%
  • Participation 10%





Schaffner, J. (2013), Development Economics: Theory, Empirical Research, and Policy Analysis, Wiley Global Education.

Note: Further readings will be distributed throughout the course.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

Please note that, as per Policy T20.01, the course requirements (and grading scheme) outlined here are subject to change up until the end of the first week of classes.

Final exam schedules will be released during the second month of classes. If your course has a final exam, please ensure that you are available during the entire final exam period until you receive confirmation of your exam dates. 

Students requiring accommodations as a result of a disability must contact the Centre for Accessible Learning (CAL) at 778-782-3112 or caladmin@sfu.ca.


Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2022 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with safety plans in place.  Some courses will still be offered through remote methods, and if so, this will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the spring 2022 term.