Economics: Tinbergen Institute (Research)

A unique programme with the best researchers and teachers from three leading schools of economics
Tinbergen Institute (TI) is the graduate school and research institute in economics, jointly operated by the faculties of economics of the Erasmus University Rotterdam, University of Amsterdam and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The two-year TI Research Master is the entry point to fully paid PhD positions at the 3 faculties.

A unique programme with the best researchers and teachers from three leading schools of economics

The TI research master is a selective programme, admitting annually 25-30 students. The high standards of the programme are guaranteed by the teaching staff, selected from among the best researchers of the three faculties participating in the institute, and by the internationally renowned experts who are invited to serve as guest lecturers in their fields of research. Research fellows are not only teaching in the programme but are also available for (PhD) thesis supervision.

TI Research Master programme: the best way to start an academic career in economics, econometrics or finance

After the first year of thorough grounding in economics, econometrics and finance, the second year offers over 40 advanced specialization courses. Students are encouraged to check several options before choosing a research topic and a supervisor. Half of the second year is devoted to thesis research under expert supervision. In most cases, the master thesis supervisor continues as PhD thesis supervisor. A jumpstart of your PhD career!

Students receive a lot in return from Tinbergen Institute

What does Tinbergen Institute offer to students?

TI offers a welcoming environment to students: students have their own office space, the programme is stimulating collaboration and active student participation. The student body is closely knit group and at the same time a diverse cultural mix, with students coming from Europe, Asia and Latin America. The institute contributes financially to a social programme organized by and for students: students go ice skating, go to the museum night, have a joint end-of-the-block-dinner and an introduction weekend. The number of dropouts from the programme is close to zero. 

TI runs its own merit-based scholarship programme: over the years, TI financially supported some 50% of the students in the 1st year. Percentages are even higher for second year students. PhD students have an employment contract and a full salary.

The Tinbergen Institute

Tinbergen Institute is a joint venture of the faculties of economics of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Erasmus University Rotterdam and University of Amsterdam. The Institute was named after Jan Tinbergen, the Dutch Nobel Prize laureate in Economics (1969).

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The study programme includes three tracks: economics, econometrics and finance

The Research Master in Economics offers advanced courses and yields 120 EC. Current information on the study programme and all courses can be found here

In the first year, all tracks offer rigorous training in the core subjects and tools of economics, econometrics and finance. Tinbergen Institute allows students to explore the research groups of three faculties in economics before they commit to work on a thesis with a specific advisor.

In the second year, students specialize in their choice from among the institute’s many fields of research through field course work and research master thesis research.

TI Lectures

TI organizes annual Lectures in economics, econometrics and finance where a world-class scholar teaches an intensive advanced small scale course on a topic that appeals to many of the institute’s students and fellows. Past lectures were taught by: Christopher Sims, Trevor Hastie, James A. Robinson, Guido W. Imbens, Pascaline Dupas, Serena Ng, Fatih Guvenen. Lectures are listed here

Stepping Stone for an Academic Career

This two-year Research Master's programme is an entry point for PhD research and training at one of the partner universities. A minority of the students continues their career in research positions elsewhere (consultancy, policy advice).

After the PhD

TI’s job market support programme supports students who are about to enter the academic job market. TI’s over 750 PhD alumni can be found all over the world: Some 50% in academic positions, others in international organizations like ECB, IMF, the World Bank and large consultancy firms, others have leading positions in government organizations or private companies. Find TI’s placement record here

TI Research Master programme: the best way to start an academic career in economics, econometrics or finance

Students work with the best researchers and lecturers from the three leading Dutch universities in economics, econometrics and finance. Once you graduate, you will:

  • Have a solid and comprehensive grasp of the latest approaches in economics, econometrics and finance.
  • Be able, initially under supervision, to write research papers for international peer reviewed journals.
  • Have ample opportunity to continue to a fully paid PhD position at one of the three participating schools of economics

Tinbergen Institute offers:

  • A unique graduate programme with the best researchers from three leading schools of economics
  • Generous funding to 1st and 2nd year students
  • More than 60 challenging courses in economics, econometrics and finance
  • Individual mentoring and intensive supervision by research fellows
  • Excellent  job market training and job placement prospects
  • An truly international, culturally diverse and dynamic community of 25-30 students a year
  • A professional and dedicated staff
  • Offices both in Amsterdam and in Rotterdam 
  • Working spaces and computers for each student

TI Research Master Programme accredited 

The Research Master programme in Economics of the Tinbergen Institute is accredited by NVAO (Nederlands-Vlaamse Accreditatieorganisatie), the accreditation organization of The Netherlands and Flanders. 

NVAO is entrusted by law to accredit all existing bachelor’s and master’s degree courses and to validate new study programmes at government-funded higher education institutions as well as institutions approved (but not funded) by the Dutch government. 

Specific entry requirements

Admission to the Research Master programme  in Economics programme is highly selec-tive. No more than 30 students are admitted to the programme each year. Admission is determined by a selection committee consisting of research fellows of the participating faculties.Criteria for admission are: a Bachelor’s degree (completed prior to starting the master programme); strong quantitative skills; an excellent command of English and a strong motivation to pursue an academic career. Please find the admission requirements and procedure here.

Overview Economics: Research Master




2 years (120 EC)



For more information about application, please click here


1 September




Economics / Econometrics / Finance


Economics, Business and Law