CIMS Summer School: Foundations and Advanced Courses on DSGE Macroeconomic Modelling and Conference

Following highly successful Easter and Summer Schools in previous years, the Centre for International Macroeconomic Studies (CIMS) in the School of Economics, University of Surrey will hold a summer school from 3-8 September 2018. The deadline for application is 3 August 2018 although places will be offered on a first-come-first-served basis. The School will consist of two parallel four-day courses, four parallel one-day stand-alone courses on day five (Friday), and a one-day conference on day six (Saturday). Participants can register for all six days, or for only one of the stand-alone one-day courses.

The target participants of the two parallel four-day courses are as follows:

  • Foundations of DSGE Modelling is aimed at early researchers with some knowledge of Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) macroeconomic models and Matlab, but little or no experience of Dynare
  • Advanced Topics in DSGE Modelling is aimed at more established researchers who are already fluent in Dynare and Matlab. This course will be useful to anyone who is engaged in practical macroeconomic modelling work, especially if they are interested in working with models that are either computationally expensive to simulate, highly nonlinear, or infinite dimensional thanks to heterogeneous agents.

The foundations and advanced courses will run in parallel for four days from 3-6 September. Then on day 5, 7 September participants will be able to choose one of four one day standalone courses covering:

  • Financial frictions
  • Optimal Policy Applications
  • Occasionally Binding Constraints and Nonlinear Estimation
  • Emerging Open Economies

For all these courses, notes and model codes will be distributed to participants.

Finally on Saturday 8 September we will hold a one day conference. All participants on the Courses are invited to submit a paper on some aspect of DSGE modelling to be presented in either full or during a Poster session.

Who should attend this summer school and conference?

  • PhD students and academics and who want to develop or extend their knowledge of DSGE modelling
  • Researchers and practitioners working at central banks, as well as at other private and public institutions, working or interested in DSGE modelling.

Course contents

Foundations of DSGE Modelling

This will start with an introduction to Dynare programming. It will then proceed to the construction and Bayesian estimation of DSGE macroeconomic models in Dynare and their use for optimal policy analysis. The course material will cover the underlying theory proceeding in steps from the RBC model through to a medium-sized NK model.

Advanced Topics in DSGE Modelling

This will cover advanced Matlab and Dynare Programming, applied dynamic programming, non-linear solution and estimation methods and DSGE modelling with heterogeneous agents.

Course options

The four full-day course options on day 5 are as follows:

  • Financial Frictions in DSGE Models: different modelling approaches; Bayesian estimation and comparison of models; conventional and unconventional monetary policy; implications of financial frictions for optimal conventional monetary policy.
  • Optimal Policy Applications: Ramsey policy; Targeting Rules and Instrument Rules; Time-Inconsistency and Recursive Contracts; Imperfect Commitment.
  • Occasionally Binding Constraints and Nonlinear Estimation: Computational methods for introducing occasionally binding constraints into large DSGE models. Application to ZLB, borrowing constraints, and irreversible investment. Non-linear estimation using dynareOBC toolkit.
  • Emerging Open Economies: Incorporation of emerging economies features into NK open-economy models (credit constrained consumers, non-traded informal sector); Bayesian estimation of models; policy rules (monetary interest rate rules, foreign exchange intervention, fiscal policy).

One-day conference

On Saturday 8 September we will hold a one-day conference. All participants on the courses are invited to submit a paper on some aspect of DSGE modelling. The organizers will select 5-6 papers to be presented in full with discussants, while the remaining submissions will be given the opportunity to be presented during our Poster session. The deadline for paper submission will be 9 July. Notification of acceptance to present a paper in full or in the poster session will be communicated by 20 July.

Course outline

Full details of the course, the instructors you will meet, reading and software that will be used plus a breakdown of each day's activities can be found on our website.


The practical sessions will take place in computer labs. We provide computers to all participants with Matlab and Dynare installed and set up.  For those wishing to use their own computers outside the sessions, it should be noted that Dynare is free software, but Matlab requires a license to be purchased.


The fees for academics and PhD students are £700 for the 5 day course, or £200 for day 5 only. For participants from central banks, ministries or the private sector the fees are £1500 for the 5-day course, or £400 for day 5 only. Those who register for any of the courses can attend the one day conference for no additional fee.

Participants who have attended a previous CIMS course are eligible for a 10 per cent discount on the 5 day course fee, while participants based at institutions in developing economies are eligible for a 20% discount on the 5 day course fee (multiple discounts are not applicable).

3 course lunches, refreshments, a course dinner on day 3, course notes and model software is included in this cost. Accommodation costs are not included in this price, but the University of Surrey offers accommodation on campus at competitive rates.

Entry requirements

Foundation course

To be considered for admission to the foundation course. applicants must have:

  • A background in macroeconomics with some knowledge of macro-modelling and dynamic optimization
  • A basic knowledge of Matlab programming (see our website for more details)
  • A working knowledge of English
  • A basic knowledge of the RBC and NK Model.

Advanced course

To be considered for admission to the advanced course, applicants must have:

  • A strong knowledge of DSGE modelling
  • A working knowledge of English
  • Experience in programming in Matlab and Dynare.

Applicants who have attended previous courses by CIMS will be particularly welcome to apply for the advanced course.

One day standalone course

To be considered for admission to the one day standalone courses applicants must have:

  • A background in economics
  • A working knowledge of English
  • A knowledge of the RBC and NK Model.

Dates and location

Monday 3 September 2018 - Saturday 8 September 2018

School of Economics, University of Surrey, Guildford, GU2 7XH


The deadline for application is 3 August 2018, but we do encourage interested people to apply as soon as possible as the places will be allocated using a rolling selection process. Once your application has been reviewed, you will receive an email offering you a place and applicants will have 2 weeks to pay the full fees balance to secure their place.

Note that the deadline for paper submission for our one-day conference will be 9 July. Hence applicants after the deadline for paper submission will only be able to present their paper in the poster session. 

The University of Surrey offers accommodation on campus at competitive rates. Details on how to book will be given once accepted onto the course. Please note that places on the course and for accommodation are on a first come first serve basis.

For our online application form please visit our website at

Further information

Should you require any further information please visit our website or for enquiries contact the CIMS team at

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