The Economics Department

Jorge Balat

Assistant ProfessorPh.D., Yale University

Jorge Balat


  • Phone: 512-475-7353
  • Office: BRB 3.134B
  • Office Hours: Fall 2019 | W 10:00AM-11:00AM
  • Campus Mail Code: C3100


ECO 350K • Economics Of Auctions

33785 • Fall 2019
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM GEA 127

There is a myriad of market mechanisms to allocate resources that can be classified as auctions. These are currently used in various markets ranging from art objects to fresh fish, from electricity to treasure bonds, from government procurement to internet ads.

This course has three main objectives. First, students will learn how these various market mechanisms work. We will discuss the theoretical foundations behind them as well as explore many real-world applications. We will use game theory to analyze bidders’ strategic interaction and characterize their behavior. Second, students will learn how the market rules can be modified to attain specific objectives and to derive policy recommendations. Finally, students will learn the recent empirical methods to analyze auction data needed to conduct research in auctions.

This class is designed for upperclassmen with a strong quantitative background. Since the work of Vickrey (1961), we can think of auctions as an application of games of incomplete information and, thus, this class is a complement to Game Theory. I will not assume any knowledge of Game Theory and will spend the first part of this course introducing all the necessary concepts of Game Theory. Even though we will discuss many real world applications, you can expect this class to be on the theoretical side.

After the introduction to Game Theory, we will examine the theoretical models behind the most commonly used auction formats: English, Dutch, first- and second-price. Students will learn the core theoretical results and will be exposed to recent empirical research in auctions. We will then spend some time discussing topics in auction design. Next, students will be introduced to the state-of-the-art empirical approaches to analyze auction data. Finally, we will discuss more advanced topics including multi-unit and internet auctions.

ECO 350K • Economics Of Auctions

34362 • Fall 2017
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM MEZ 1.208

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