Seminar Public Finance (MW23.4) - Summer Term 2022

Survey Design for Causal Inference: Applications in Pubic Economics Research


The seminar deals with current questions of social policy and topics in education and migration economics. The main focus lies on the empirical examination of these topics by means of methods of survey design for causal inference. Utilizing representative and methodologically advanced survey techniques, an analysis of the economic effects of policy measures and the attitudes of the population towards redistribution and pension policy, educational policy and international migration are explored. Interpreting the causal relationships identified via these survey methods allows researchers to provide reliable scientific advice for policy makers. The seminar hence aims to develop an understanding of the relevance of econometric survey methods and their implications for empirical analyses in public economics research.


You will have to read and understand original empirical research papers as part of this course. A solid background in statistics and regression analysis is a necessary perquisite in order to successfully pass this course. We highly recommend taking "Empirical Methods" (MW24.1) before this seminar.

Important Remarks

The Chair of Public Finance follows a zero-tolerance policy with respect to plagiarism. In previous seminars, up to 20% of the students failed because of plagiarism in their seminar papers. Please read again carefully the slides about plagiarism and conduct the test on "How to Cite/ How to Avoid Plagiarism" available in the Moodle-course "Approaches to Economic Science" ("WS2021-Approaches"). (If you do not have access to this Moodle-course, contact Julia Peter.)

January 2022 Central registration

10 Feb 2022

9.00 - 10.00 am
For those students allocated to this seminar: Meeting and presentation of topics (via Zoom)
18 Feb 2022 Choice of preferred topics and preferred start date (see next item). The topics’ preferences serve as the basis for the allocation of topics.

01 March 2022,
15 March 2022 or
29 March 2022

Start of your individual writing period. You can choose to receive your topic on either Tuesday, March 01, March 15, or March 29.

After receiving your topic, you have 5 weeks to complete a first version of your seminar paper. The paper will then be refereed by another student within 1 week. After receiving the referee report you have 2 more weeks to improve your paper on the basis of the referee's comments.

25 April 2022,
09 May 2022 or
23 May 2022

(depending on starting date)

Submission of the final version of your seminar paper (depending on start date). The deadline is midnight from Monday to Tuesday.
Soon after Time plan for the seminar (incl. allocation of discussants)
June 2022 Seminar (blocked)


For guidelines and regulations, see hereExternal link


To submit your topic preferences and review the slides after the information event on 10 February 2022, please go to ("Seminar Public Finance (MW23.4) - Summer Term 2022").  You will also find further information and materials on the seminar there.