Econometrics, Quantitative Economics, Data Science

Theoretical and Empirical Aspects of Matching Markets

Columbia University G6232, Spring 2011


Course information

Lecturer: Alfred Galichon,
Office: SIPA building, Rm 1113. Please schedule appointment by email.
Time and Location: Tu 11am-12:50pm, location 1027 International Affairs Building.
Course starts Feb 1.
Texts: No text is required. A worthwhile reading is Roth and Sotomayor, Two-Sided Matching A study in Game-Theoretic Modeling and Analysis, Cambridge.
Grading: Students taking this course for credit should write a paper relevant to an aspect of the course, to be dicussed with the instructor. This course will be graded on a pass/fail basis.


Description of the Course

The course will focus on the economic theory of matching both from a theoretical and empirical point of views. It is intended to give the attendees an overview of the fundamental theory of the optimal assignment problem, as well as its application to various fields such as labor, family and transportation economics. A particular emphasis is put on the empirical aspects and identification issues, and the main matching algorithms will also be discussed. The last part of the course tries to make a link with matching games with nontransferable (or partially transferable) utility and attempts to provide a unified treatment.

A syllabus can be found here.

The lecture notes can be found here.


Course outline

Part I. Matching with Transferable Utility (TU) Feb 1,8,15. 11am-1pm.
General introduction to matching. Optimal matching and duality. Optimal transportation theory.

Part II. Empirical issues in TU models. Feb 22, March 1, 8, 15. 11am-1pm.
Identification and estimation issues. Computational issues. Economics of the family. Hedonic models.

Part III. Matching with Non-transferable Utility (NTU) March 22, 29, April 5, 12, 19. 11am-1pm.
The stable marriage problem and the Gale-Shapley procedure. The kidney problem. Linking TU and NTU models. Empirical issues in NTU matching. Incorporating frictions and search. Matching with contracts.

There will be two make-up classes which are informal “crash courses” on more technical aspects of the subject. Attendance is encouraged, but not necessary for following the rest of the course.
Feb 8, 9–11am. Crash course on convex analysis and linear programming.
Feb 22, 9-11am. Crash course on algorithms and computational issues.