Institutt for økonomi

PhD-kurs: Experimental Economics and the Scottish Enlightenment


Professor Bart J. Wilson, Chapman University, will hold the following PhD course at the Department of Economics:


«Experimental Economics and the Scottish Enlightenment»



In this course we consider how experimental economics and the philosophy of the 18th century Scottish enlightenment inform and elucidate each other on how spontaneous, self-generating orders emerge (out of apparent chaos). More specifically, we will explore how exchange systems work and how rules of conduct emerge to undergird those systems.


The course uses a combination of hands-on learning in laboratory experiments and Socratic roundtable discussions of readings. In addition to current research in experimental economics, our primary sources include Adam Smith, David Hume, and their modern heir F. A. Hayek.


Description of learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course the students should be able to: i) Provide an overview how experimental economics blended with Scottish Enlightenment philosophy can explain how spontaneous, self-generating orders emerge. ii) Explain how exchange system and rules of conduct emerge to undergird those spontaneous order, and iii) provide an overview of how Scottish enlightenment philosophers David Hume and Adam Smith and their modern heir F.A. Hayek contribute to the understanding of emerging of spontaneous order.  


Outline of the course

The course starts 18 May 10:00 and ends 21 May at 17:00. A more detailed time schedule will be posted later. You can find a link to required texts here.   


Requirements for course and credit

To get credit for the course the student should: i) participate active in the class, and ii) hand in and get approved a paper (15 pages) on a relevant topic within 20 August 2015.

Candidates who pass both requirements will be given 5 ECTS credits.



To apply, please send your curriculum vitae and a short statement of research interest, all in one pdf file, to Kathrine Kloppen, Department of Economics, University of Bergen, kathrine.kloppen@econ.uib.no.


The deadline for applications is Friday May 1st.



The participants will have to arrange accommodation for themselves. As it might be difficult to find a hotel room in Bergen in May, we have made a hotel reservation for the course participants at the Scandic Byparken. The rooms cost NOK 1090 per night. Those who are admitted to the course will be given a booking code to be used in the contact with the hotel.



The course is organised by Professor Sigve Tjøtta (sigve.tjotta@econ.uib.no) and Senior Executive Officer Kathrine Kloppen (kathrine.kloppen@econ.uib.no) at the Department of Economics, University of Bergen. If you have questions concerning credit and other administrative issues related to course, please send an email to one of them.