The Honors Program was created to provide economics majors with the opportunity to delve deeply into an intellectual interest they have developed while at Duke and engage in a meaningful, sustained research project. The capstone of this program is a research paper — the honors thesis — completed during the senior year of the economics major. It represents a degree of research and critical thinking sufficiently complex and sophisticated to require two to three semesters’ worth of work. The thesis is planned, researched, drafted, and revised over the course of two to three semesters, using research tools and techniques commensurate with an undergraduate B.S. degree. Students also have the opportunity to present their honors research in a poster format at the Honors Thesis Poster Session, an event put on every spring by the Department of Economics.
Through this website, the Department of Economics maintains an archive of past Honors Program theses and data sets, when available. Students may want to refer to past papers to further inform their research questions and gain an understanding of the expectations and standards for a typical honors thesis. Use the search feature to look up past honors theses by author, advisor, title, JEL code, and/or keywords.