B.Sc. (Hons) in Economics and Finance

The interdisciplinary B.Sc. Hons programme in Economics and Finance will help students to understand the basic principles of economics and its applications to financial systems and organisations. Students will master a set of tools that will enable them to think critically and contribute to debates on a wide array of interesting problems and issues of economic policy.  Students will be taught the quantitative techniques in mathematics and statistics that have become an integral part of modern economic analysis.  The curriculum will also include advanced financial techniques such as derivatives pricing, risk management and portfolio management.

We are confident that students will imbibe the skills necessary to enter a wide range of careers. Some will go on to further studies in Economics and Finance. Others will find employment with financial institutions such as banks, insurance companies, as well as in financial advisory work.


Faculty Format of the MajorCourses and Descriptions



BhaskarDutta RatulLahkar Anuradha-Saha Aparajita-Dasgupta Pulapare-Balakrishnan
Bhaskar Dutta
Ph.D. University of Delhi
Ratul Lahkar
Associate Professor
Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Madison
Anuradha Saha
Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Indian Statistical Institute
Aparajita Dasgupta
Assistant Professor
Ph.D. University of California, Riverside
Pulapare Balakrishnan
Ph.D. University of Cambridge


Format of the Major

Apart from the 12 Foundation courses, each student will take a total of 16 courses towards the major. After introductory courses onMicroeconomics, Macroeconomics, Mathematics and Statistics for Economists, the curriculum will include courses on Game Theory, Econometrics, Financial Markets, Investment Analysis and Portfolio Management, Advanced Financial Management, Management of Financial Institutions.

An important feature of the Economics and FinanceMajor, and one consistent with Ashoka University’s emphasis on critical thinking and writing, is that every student will have to write an Undergraduate dissertation.

Most classes will meet twice a week for an hour and a half each. These classes with the Professor will be supplemented by a weekly hour-long session with the Teaching Assistant for a total of 4 hours a week of class time per course. Some senior seminars might meet for once a week for a 3-hour session.


Courses and Descriptions

Mathematics for Economics

This course introduces the students to the mathematical techniques necessary for the study of economics at the undergraduate level. In particular, the course will cover univariate and multivariate calculus, optimization techniques and linear algebra.

Statistics for Economics

This course covers elementary probability theory, the concept and methods of sampling, basic techniques for making estimates using data, and simple linear regression.

Intermediate Microeconomics

Microeconomics is the study of the fundamental principles of economics that are used in all other areas of economics. This course builds upon the “Foundations of Economics” course to provide a more in-depth study of consumer and producer theory, market structure, welfare economics and game theory.

Intermediate Macroeconomics

Macroeconomics is the study of aggregate phenomena like the level of national income (GDP), employment and inflation. Building upon the “Foundations of Economics” course, this course studies the determinants of national income, unemployment, inflation, and economic growth. It also introduces the student to the role of fiscal and monetary policies of the government in stabilizing a national economy.

Game Theory and Applications

Game theory studies strategic interaction between different people. It is an indispensable tool for the study of more advanced topics in microeconomics. This course introduces key concepts of this area. It trains them to think strategically and predict the outcome of interactive situations. Applications are provided from economics as well as other areas like political science.

Introductory Econometrics

This course introduces students to the empirical techniques required for data analysis to verify economic hypotheses. It will begin with a review of statistical concepts and simple linear regression (already covered in the “Statistics for Economics” course) and move on to more advanced methods of regression.

Money and the Financial System

This course introduces the student to the role of money and the financial system in a modern economy. Topics covered include the importance of money, fundamental financial concepts like bonds, stocks, derivatives and foreign exchange, the nature and importance of various financial institutions like banks and stock markets, interest rate determination and the role of the central bank in conducting monetary policy. All these topics will be covered with special reference to India.

Development Economics

This course studies the characteristics of economic underdevelopment in developing countries like India. It will introduce students to the concept of economic development (growth vs. development debate) and then build upon “Intermediate Macroeconomics” to study economic growth in more detail. It will provide a rigorous discussion of the concepts of poverty and inequality. The student will learn the connections between development and demographic characteristics of an economy. The course will also cover the relationship between development and the role of political, community and various economic institutions (land, labour and credit markets) in an economy.

International Economics

In this course, students will learn about the theories that explain the nature of international trade, factors that decide the trade policy of nations and the consequences of such policies. The course will also cover certain topics in international macroeconomics like the concept of exchange rates, purchasing power parity, and the determination of exchange rates.

The Indian Economy

The course will describe the major structural features of the Indian economy, how it has evolved, and the major problems facing it.

Market Design

Traditionally, economics focuses on the study of existing markets.  Recently, regulators, entrepreneurs and economists have been involved in the design of markets.  They have created institutionalized markets for new products, and have redesigned existing markets that were dysfunctional.  This course utilizes ideas from game theory and microeconomics to provide the theoretical underpinnings for design and analysis of such markets.  Further, via real world examples, we study the practical aspects of such market design and the institutional details which can determine the success or failure of a design.

Financial Markets

This course focuses on international financial markets and exchange rates. Topics include pricing in the foreign currency and Eurocurrency markets, use of forward exchange for hedging, short-term returns and market efficiency in the international money markets, foreign currency options, international capital asset pricing, pricing of foreign currency bonds, currency swaps, Eurocurrency syndicated loans, foreign currency financing and exposure management.

Management of Financial Institutions 

This course provides students with an overview of the basic contributions in the modern theory of corporate finance and financial institutions. The course is methodology oriented in that students are required to master necessary technical tools for each topic. The topics covered may include capital structure, distribution policy, financial intermediation, incomplete financial contracting, initial and seasoned public offerings, market for corporate control, product market corporate finance interactions, corporate reorganization and bankruptcy, financing in imperfect markets, security design under adverse selection and moral hazard, and some selected topics.

Undergraduate Dissertation

The purpose of this course is to promote original thinking amongst students. Students are expected to choose a topic and write a dissertation which can either be a critical survey of the existing literature or an original piece of work.
Below is a sample structure of the 3-year Economics and Finance major at Ashoka University.

Major courses are indicated in red.


Semester 1

Semester 2

Semester 3

Intro to Critical Thinking Critical Thinking Seminar I Critical Thinking Seminar II
Great Books Trends in History Statistics for Economists
Introduction to Mathematical Thinking Indian Civilisations Intermediate Macroeconomics
Foundations of Economic Reasoning Mathematics for Economists Intermediate Microeconomics
Literature and the World


Semester 4

Semester 5

Semester 6

Social and Political Formations Mind and Behaviour Market Design
Principles of Science Money and the Financial System Management of Financial Institutions
Game Theory and Applications Advanced Financial Management International Economics
Introduction to Econometrics Investment Analysis and Portfolio Management Behavioural Economics
Financial Markets       The Indian Economy Undergraduate Dissertation


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