Summer School on Complexity Economics, Behavioral Economics and Data Science

From Monday, 2nd September 2019, to Wednesday, 4th September 2019, the newly founded “Netzwerk ökonomische Bildung und Beratung e.V.” is organizing a Summer School on Complexity Economics, Behavioral Economics and Data Science. The Summer School will take place at the Ruhr-University Bochum.

As part of “Netzwerk ökonomische Bildung und Beratung e.V.”, the Chair for Macroeconomics of the Ruhr-University Bochum is main organizer of this conference.

Aims and Objective

Following the increased desire and need for the integration of behavioral economics into the economics curriculum and economic modelling (i.a. Potrafke et al. (2018)), the summer school teaches student in the advancementsof behavioral economics, its implementation in agents-based modeling and data science.The courses aim to provide students with both the technical and theoretical skills required to successfully apply behavioral economics in a research project, such as a PhD or a paper.The summer school contains three parallel tracks on Behavioral Economics in Theory, Agent-Based Modelling and Data Science.

What will you learn?

Besides the mentioned parallel tracks on Behavioral Economics in Theory, Agent-Based Modelling and Data Science, an introductory lecture on Complexity Economics and Pluralism in Economics will take place. The applicants have to decide which track to apply for.

Lectures on Complexity and Pluralism (by Dr. Claudius Gräbner (ICAE Linz))

This talk takes place at the very beginning of the methodological workshops and it should cover all the philosophical aspectsinvolved in the courses. Thereby, it should provide the students with the analytical tools from Philosophy of Scienceto adequately appreciate the methods to be learned in the upcoming days. Among other goals, students should understand the link between the complexity of economies, behavioral economics and the need for pluralism in economic inquiry. The introductory lecture will be held by Dr. Claudius Gräbner.

Behavioral Economics in Theory (by Prof. Dr. Christian Cordes (University Bremen) and Dr. Maria Daskalakis (University Kassel))

The course has two parts. First, Maria Daskalakis deals with limitations and potentials of decision-making and the tension between innovation and routine. This is done from an interdisciplinary perspective, which includes current research on biases as obstacles for decision-making and refers to the psychological, cognitive and micro-sociological foundations of problem solving. This course builds a bridge between "Old Behavioral Economics" (Sent 2004) and current behavioral economics, considering neighboring disciplines. In the second part, Prof Cordes introduces the participants to a naturalistic approach to economics. Based on the insights of cultural evolution theory, participants gain a deeper understanding of cultural roots of human cognition and its impact on decision-making, e.g. how cultural learning prohibits consumption.

Agent-Based Modelling (by Prof. Dr. Michael Roos and Tom Bauermann (both Ruhr-University Bochum))

The participants of this course will learn to include the insights of behavioral economics into (macro-)economic models, more precisely in agent-based models (ABM). In contrast to standard models, ABM view agents as heterogeneous, boundedly rational, interacting individuals (Simon (1955)). ABM pay special attention for human decision making and learning as it is known from behavioral economics. The course will focus on consumption behavior of agents. The classes are split into lectures that cover the essential concepts and ideas of ABM, held by Prof Roos, and hands-on tutorials on modelling with NetLogo, held by Tom Bauermann. Besides general knowledge on ABM, students will be able to construct their own models and perform simulations.

Data Science (by Prof. Dr. Ulrich Fritsche (University Hamburg))

This course will train participants in the main concepts of data science, especially in text-mining. Today an increasing amount of information is being held in (un)structured formats, such as minutes. Text mining is the process of analyzing collections of textual materials in order to capture key concepts and themes and uncover hidden relationships and trends without requiring that you know the precise words or terms that authors have used to express those concepts.The classes cover text crawling and frequency analysis, basic lexicometrics, term extraction and collocation, an introduction into classification/ clustering, unsupervised and supervised learning, basic topic models and classifications that use learning algorithms. At the end of the course, students should be able to analyze texts as a network of words. The course covers lectures and hands-on tutorials in R-Studio, both held by Prof Fritsche.

Time Schedule of Summer School

Please click on the table to enlarge it.

Social Event

To allow for exchange among young researchers, to relax after three days of intensive lecture and to get to know the environment of the summer school, we plan to make joined trip in a local mining museum and, afterwards, to host a dinner together. Precise plans will be announced.

To whom it is addressed

The summer school is addressed to highly motivated graduate students and PhD students as well as researchers interested in behavioral economics, agent-based modeling and data science, especially text-mining. Interested students should send an application, which contains a letter of motivation (max. 1.5 pages) detailing the desired track to attend (Behavioral Economics in Theory, Agent-Based Modelling or Data Science) and the interest of the candidate, and a CV. The number of participants is restricted to 20 per course.

The application period starts on 1st February 2019 and ends at the 15th April 2019. The applications should be sent to Later applications will also be evaluated, but only in the case of free posts. Applicants will be notified by e-mail regarding the status of their applications by the mid of May 2019.


Tom Bauermann
Research Assistant
Chair of Macroeconomics

More information on Netzwerk ökonomische Bildung und Beratung e.V.

Follows soon…