Mineral and Energy Economics

About the Program

Founded in 1969, this world-renowned program leads to MS and PhD degrees in Mineral and Energy Economics. Originally known as Mineral Economics, our program attracts students from all over the world, and our alumni are known globally for their career achievements and qualifications. Students gain the skills necessary for understanding the complex interactions of markets and policy that influence the energy, mineral and environmental industries. The program focuses on applied quantitative tools and models that form a foundation for sound business and public policy.

Why Mineral and Energy Economics?

Graduate study in Mineral and Energy Economics at Mines offers a specialized program in applied economics that includes training in valuable quantitative methods. Our faculty are actively engaged in economic research applied to earth, energy and the environment. They have specific expertise in global climate policy, price forecasting, energy demand, utility regulation, asset valuation, critical minerals, environmental economics, renewable energy mandates, and international mineral markets. Our faculty and graduate students are unique in their focus on applied energy, mineral and environmental topics. This concentration of interest and expertise cannot be found in traditional economics programs. Students earn a distinctive degree that is highly marketable and positions them for important contributions.

Brett JordanThe Division of Economics and Business has such a unique perspective on natural resource issues. It’s common to have econ departments that tangentially might deal with natural resource or energy issues on occasion, but they don’t have that strong institutional knowledge that Mines has.

Brett Jordan
PhD, Mineral and Energy Economics
Class of 2017

MS in Mineral and Energy Economics

The MS degree in Mineral and Energy Economics is the division’s most popular program. In the first year, students are trained in the core skills necessary for graduate-level economic analysis of energy, mineral and environmental topics. In the second year, students, in consultation with their advisor, customize their studies by selecting a set of enriching electives. The program is typically completed in two years: 12 courses (36 credit hours) with a recommended 3 courses per semester.

Degree Requirements

Two options are available for the MS degree: non-thesis and thesis. The non-thesis optionrequires 36 credit hours of graduate-level course work including core and elective courses. The thesis option requires a total of 36 credit hours consisting of 24 credit hours of graduate-level core and electives courses in addition to 12 credit hours of Master’s-level thesis development. For both options two elective courses must be taken at the 600 level or above. Masters students are only admitted to a thesis-based program after one or two semesters of course work. To apply send a statement of intent to the program manager. The request will be reviewed by the admissions committee.

Non-thesis Option Course Work

  • 15 credit hours of core courses (5 classes)
  • 21 credit hours of electives (7 classes, 2 must be at the 600 level or above)

Thesis Option Course Work

  • 15 credit hours of core courses (6 classes)
  • 12 credit hours master’s-level thesis development/research credits
  • 9 credit hours of electives (2 classes at the 600 level or above)

Additional Program Option

Reciprocity Agreement with the University of Denver in Law and Economics Program. Students enrolled in the M.S. Mineral Economics Program at Mines or the Juris Doctorate Program (JD) in Law from the University of Denver may under the reciprocal agreement complete 6 approved credits at either school by enrolling for the courses at both Registrar Offices. PhD and JD students may have the opportunity to double count up to 12 credit hours towards both programs; see your advisor for more information. Applicants must apply to each program separately. See Kathleen Martin to register.

Prerequisites

Prior to starting the program, students must complete the following, all with a grade of B or higher:

  • A course in Principles of Microeconomics
  • A course in Probability and Statistics
  • One semester of college-level calculus.
  • Students will only be allowed to enter the program in the spring under exceptional circumstances as approved by the program
  • director. Contact Dr. Ian Lange if you desire a spring admission.

Curriculum

Core Courses (15 credits Thesis & Non-Thesis)

All MS and PhD students in Mineral and Energy Economics are required to take a set of core courses that provide basic tools for the more advanced and specialized courses in the program.

  • EBGN 509 Mathematical Economics*
  • EBGN 510 Natural Resource Economics
  • EBGN 521 Microeconomics II
  • EBGN 590 Econometrics
  • EBGN Econometrics Elective**

**  A second econometrics course is required (available courses are EBGN594 or EBGN690)

Electives (21 credits Non-thesis or 6 credits Thesis)

Choose courses in consultation with your advisor. Some typical electives are listed below. You are free to mix across the lists, but your program of study must be approved by your advisor. Students should not assume that courses taken at Mines or other institutions will apply to their degree without consultation with their advisor. A minimum of two course must be at the 600 level.

Applied Economics

  • EBGN 512 Macroeconomics
  • EBGN 530 Energy Economics
  • EBGN 535 Economics of Metal Industries & Markets
  • EBGN 570 Environmental Economics
  • EBGN 594 Time-series Econometrics
  • EBGN 610 Advanced Resource Economics
  • EBGN 611 Advanced Microeconomics
  • EBGN 632 Primary Fuels
  • EBGN 645 Computational Economics
  • EBGN 690 Advanced Econometrics

Quantitative Methods

  • EBGN 594 Time-series Econometrics
  • EBGN 645 Computational Economics
  • EBGN 655 Advanced Linear Programming
  • EBGN 657 Advanced Integer Programming
  • EBGN 690 Advanced Econometrics
  • EBGN 698 Stochastic Programming

Operations, Management and Finance

  • EBGN 504 Economic Eval. & Investment Decision Methods
  • EBGN 540 Accounting and Finance
  • EBGN 546 Investment and Portfolio Management
  • EBGN 553 Project Management
  • EBGN 555 Linear Programming
  • EBGN 560 Decision Analysis
  • EBGN 563 Management of Technology
  • EBGN 572 International Business Strategy
  • EBGN 575 Advanced Mining and Energy Valuation
PhD in Mineral and Energy Economics

The PhD program is designed for students interested in contributing economic research on mineral or energy topics through a PhD thesis. PhD students take the same first-year core as masters students followed by a set of advanced electives. They are then required to engage in original research of a professional-level quality. PhD students must pass a series of qualification exams after the first and second year of course work, and form a committee of faculty who will evaluate the research thesis. PhD students will take 48 credit hours (16 courses) in the classroom and an additional 24 credit hours of research under the supervision of their thesis advisor. Students are encouraged to complete their degree requirements within four years.

Prerequisites

Prior to starting the program, students must complete the following courses (normally as part of their undergraduate studies) with a grade of B or better:

  • Principles of Microeconomics
  • Probability and Statistics
  • College-level Calculus
  • Students will not be allowed to begin coursework until the prerequisites are satisfied.

PhD Course Work

  • 18 credit hours of common core courses (6 classes)
  • 9 credit hours of extended core courses (3 classes)
  • 18 credit hours of electives, as approved by the student’s advisor and thesis committee (6 classes)
  • For specific course work plans and suggested electives, review the PhD advising sheet .

PhD Research Requirement

  • 3 credit hours of classroom work covering research methodology (EBGN695 to be taken in year two)
  • 24 hours of thesis credit

Additional Course Work Option

Reciprocity Agreement with the University of Denver in Law and Economics Program. Students enrolled in the M.S. Mineral Economics Program at Mines or the Juris Doctorate Program (JD) in Law from the University of Denver may under the reciprocal agreement complete 6 approved credits at either school by enrolling for the courses at both Registrar Offices. PhD and JD students may have the opportunity to double count up to 12 credit hours towards both programs; see your advisor for more information. Applicants must apply to each program separately. See Kathleen Martin to register.

Qualifying Examinations

Upon completion of the core course work, students must pass a series of qualifying written examinations to become a candidate for the PhD degree. The qualifying exams are offered at the end of the firs and second year of course work. After the first year of coursework the student will be tested to assess their mastery of microeconomics and quantitative methods (including econometrics). After completing the extended core in the second year students will be tested to assess their ability to perform independent research.

Research Presentation and Other Thesis-Related Requirements

Following a successful thesis proposal defense and prior to the final thesis defense, the student is required to present a completed research paper (or dissertation chapter) in a research seminar at Mines. The research presentation must be considered of a sufficient professional-level quality by at least three Mines faculty members in attendance. In addition to the mentioned requirements, the PhD student may, at the discretion of the committee, be required to complete assignments and/or examinations that are more directly related to the thesis topic.

Thesis Defense

The PhD degree culminates in a final oral defense of the student’s research thesis. Upon approval of the thesis by the student’s committee, the thesis is submitted to the Graduate School.

Guidelines for Appropriate Progress Toward the PhD Degree

The guidelines give expectations about what constitutes appropriate progress towards the PhD degree. They are meant to be helpful, identify specific milestones along the way, and officially monitor progress. Your progress towards a PhD degree will be reviewed annually by the division during the summer term. See the PhD Progress Form in the “Thesis Form” menu option to the right which identifies the necessary steps to obtain a finding of “satisfactory” progress.

Always refer to your bulletin for the most accurate information on degree requirements.

Dual Degree: Petroleum Economics and Management + Mineral and Energy Economics

The Division of Economic and Business at Mines and the Institut Français du Petrole (IFP), in Paris, France, together offer an advanced collaborative international graduate degree program to meet the needs of industry and government. Our unique program trains the next generation of technical, analytical and managerial professionals vital to the future of the petroleum and energy industries.

These two world-class institutions offer a rigorous and challenging program in an international setting. The program gives a small elite group of students a solid economics foundation combined with quantitative business skills, the historical and institutional background, and the interpersonal and intercultural abilities in the fast-paced, global world of oil and gas.

Qualifications

Qualifications for the program include:

  • The equivalent of a U.S. Bachelor’s degree with a strong academic background
  • A keen interest in an international career in the public or private sector relating to petroleum and other energy industries
  • A commitment to excellence and leadership
  • For professionals working in industry, research or government organizations, both experience and academic background will be taken into consideration.

Degrees

After studying in English for only 16 months (8 months at Mines and 8 months at IFP) the successful student of Petroleum Economics and Management (PEM) receives not one but two degrees:

  • Masters of Science in Mineral and Energy Economics from Mines and
  • Diplôme D’Ingénieur or Mastère Spécialisé from IFP

Who is Eligible?

Mines, and the Mineral and Energy Economics program in particular, is known worldwide for the quality of its students. The program has attracted students from more than 25 countries. Students admitted to the program are chosen for their:

  • Strong intellect
  • Integrity
  • Work ethic
  • Quantitative skills as demonstrated by their:
    • Course work
    • GPA
    • Scores on either the GRE or the GMAT

In addition, students must demonstrate a strong interest in energy, minerals, public policy, and/or related environmental and technological issues. These interests will be reflected in the letter of interest and previous involvement in these areas. The division is also looking for strong leadership potential as shown by previous academic, personal, and employment successes. All students must have completed Calculus I, Introductory Probability and Statistics, and Principles of Microeconomics prior to entering the program.

Application Deadline

Important: Applications for admission to the dual degree program should be submitted for consideration by the deadlines  set by the Graduate Admissions Office to begin courses the following fall semester in August. We make our offers in April. Only seven students are selected for the program each year. We also select three alternate students. A deposit of $500 is due to secure your place in the program.

Tuition

The Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) allows students who are residents of 14 surrounding western states to enroll on a resident tuition basis. The Mineral and Energy Economics program is an approved WICHE program. For information on WICHE, visit http://www.wiche.edu/.

Degree Requirements

The Dual Degree program offered by the Division of Economics and Business (EB) requires students to take a total of 48 credit hours of graduate-level course work. Course work is split between Colorado School of Mines and the Institut Français du Petrole (IFP) with 24 credit hours in residence at Mines in Golden, CO and 24 credit hours in residence at IFP in Paris, France.

Mines Requirements for the Dual Degree Program

  • 9 credit hours core courses (3 classes)
  • 15 credit hours EB department electives (5 classes)

IFP Requirements for the Dual Degree Program*

  • 5 courses taken during IFP Semester 1 – Spring (see IFP course list below)
  • 8 courses taken during IFP Semester 2 – Summer (see IFP course list below)

*Sample IFP degree requirements.

Additional Program Option

Reciprocity Agreement with the University of Denver in Law and Economics Program. Students enrolled in the M.S. Mineral Economics Program at Mines or the Juris Doctorate Program (JD) in Law from the University of Denver may under the reciprocal agreement complete 6 approved credits at either school by enrolling for the courses at both Registrar Offices. PhD and JD students may have the opportunity to double count up to 12 credit hours towards both programs; see your advisor for more information. Applicants must apply to each program separately. See Kathleen Martin to register.

Prerequisites

Entering students must have:

  • A bachelor’s degree
  • Demonstrate completion of the following undergraduate courses with a grade of “B” or better or its equivalent.
    • Microeconomics
    • Calculus
    • Probability and Statistics

Curriculum

Mines Core Courses (9 credit hours)

Dual Degree students are required to take the following set of core courses at Mines that provide basic tools for the more advanced and specialized courses in the program.

  • EBGN 509 Mathematical Economics*
  • EBGN 510 Natural Resource Economics
  • EBGN Econometrics Elective**

**A econometrics elective is required (currently the available courses are EBGN594 or EBGN690)

Mines EB Department Electives (15 credit hours)

Choose 3 courses in addition to the EBGN Econometric Elective listed in Core Courses in consultation with your advisor. Some typical electives are listed below. You are free to mix across the lists, but your program of study must be approved by your advisor. Students should not assume that courses taken at Mines or other institutions will apply to their degree without consultation with their advisor. A minimum of two courses must be at the 600 level.

Applied Economics

  • EBGN 512 Macroeconomics
  • EBGN 530 Energy Economics
  • EBGN 535 Economics of Metal Industries & Markets
  • EBGN 570 Environmental Economics
  • EBGN 594 Time-series Econometrics
  • EBGN 610 Advanced Resource Economics
  • EBGN 611 Advanced Microeconomics
  • EBGN 690 Advanced Econometrics
  • EBGN 698 Primary Fuels
  • EBGN 698 Computational Economics

Quantitative Methods

  • EBGN 594 Time-series Econometrics
  • EBGN 655 Advanced Linear Programming
  • EBGN 657 Advanced Integer Programming
  • EBGN 690 Advanced Econometrics
  • EBGN 698 Stochastic Programming
  • EBGN 698 Computational Economics

Operations, Management and Finance

  • EBGN 504 Economic Eval. & Investment Decision Methods
  • EBGN 540 Accounting and Finance
  • EBGN 546 Investment and Portfolio Management
  • EBGN 553 Project Management
  • EBGN 555 Linear Programming
  • EBGN 560 Decision Analysis
  • EBGN 563 Management of Technology
  • EBGN 572 International Business Strategy
  • EBGN 575 Advanced Mining and Energy Valuation

IFP Courses (24 credit hours)

Dual Degree students are required to take these or similar courses at IFP in France:

IFP Semester 1 (Spring)

  • PEM1 Business Accounting
  • PEM2 Organization Behavior
  • PEM5 Energy Geopolitics
  • PEM 6 Upstream Management
  • PEM9 Production and Reservoir Engineering (9a.Beginner/9b.Advanced)

IFP Semester 2 (Summer)

  • PEM3 Strategic Marketing
  • PEM4 Energy Economics and Development
  • PEM7 Downstream Economics
  • PEM8 Commodities Markets and Trading
  • PEM10 Refining
  • PEM11 Efficiency Analysis of Industrial Firms
  • PEM12 Industrial Optimization
  • PEM13 Advance Econometrics

Student Fellowships and Funding Opportunities

Broussard Fellowships for Engineering Technology & Management
Apply by March 1 to compete for limited scholarships available to accepted Engineering and Technology Management students. Students are awarded these fellowships based on their academic scholarship. Please indicate on your application that you wish to receive financial aid.
Teaching Assistant Positions
Apply by March 1 to compete for limited teaching assistant (TA) positions to begin in the following fall semester. PhD students have priority on the available positions. We hire approximately 10 students to teach principles of economics recitation sections. We also hire students to work as hourly graduate assistants to grade for courses. Faculty members will hire students as research assistants (RA) when research projects are secured. Once you enroll at Mines students may search for on-campus positions in Diggernet.
Darlene Regina Pauli Scholarship Fund
Eligibility: Female Colorado residents pursuing a master of science degree in any geological science at Colorado School of Mines, with a preference for students pursuing a master’s of science degree in Mineral and Energy Economics. This is an annual, need-based scholarship; must maintain a 3.0 GPA. Contact the Division of Economics and Business for details on applying. The average award is $2,000 per year.
Resource Capital Funds Graduate Fellowship

RCF is a mining-focused private equity firm based in Denver. A fund was established by RCF in 2002 to provide financial awards in the form of two RCF Fellowships to worthy graduate students enrolled as full-time candidates for Master of Science or a Doctor of Philosophy degrees in either Mining and Earth Systems Engineering or Mineral and Energy Economics.

Each RCF Fellowship award is $35,000 and is intended to cover full tuition for residents, plus a monthly stipend, for the student’s first two semesters of study. The fellowship includes the potential to be considered for a summer internship at RCF at the conclusion of the first year of study. Fellowship recipients will have an outstanding academic background and a strong interest in mine finance, project evaluation, mine feasibility and mineral economics. The fellowship recipient must achieve a minimum GPA of 3.50 during their first semester of study to remain eligible to receive the funds during the second semester, as well as to be considered for the summer internship program. Interested students should submit their graduate application by March 15th, clearly indicating an interest in and qualifications for the RCF Fellowship in their application letter. Awards will be announced by June 1st.

Student Organizations

Mines Entrepreneurship Club

The entrepreneurship club brings students together to gain the knowledge and skills needed to start a new business.  We facilitate the learning process by  setting up a forum where students can interact with successful and experienced alumni  and other prominent community members.  Topics covered include, but are not limited to: taking an idea from concept to reality, raising capital (bootstrapping, VC funding, angel funding, IPOs), legal needs and patent issues, and developing a business plan. The club continues to plan, sponsor, and market  events outside of standard meeting times that provide education and mentorship such as the Rockies Venture Club Angel Investor Conference and various events  with the CSM alumni association and career services.

Mission Statement

The Colorado School of Mines Entrepreneurship Club aims to provide an environment for students to network and share ideas in an effort to encourage the entrepreneurial spirit and foster innovation.   The club also emphasizes community and providing the mentorship needed for students to overcome business challenges they face after graduation.  Furthermore, the club will act as a forum where students can interact with prominent community entrepreneurs and access relevant entrepreneurial resources.  Our goal is to benefit students interested in starting their own business or working for a firm with an entrepreneurial culture.

Faculty Sponsor: Mark Mondry (mmondry@mines.edu) or contact ship.csm@gmail.com with any questions.

US Association for Energy Economics

The Colorado School of Mines Chapter of the United States Association for Energy Economics (USAEE) is committed to expanding the reach of energy information in both the private and public sectors. The Chapter focuses on current energy issues and research at the state, national, and international level. It provides an excellent forum to meet, network, and exchange ideas in the regional energy community. The Chapter hosts several events and field trips a year, the most notable of which is the annual Rocky Mountain Energy Economics Banquet which takes place each fall.

You can learn more and stay up-to-date on Chapter activities by accessing our public website.

To get in touch with us at the Colorado School of Mines Chapter, please contact one of the representatives below. They can help answer any questions you may have.

Leadership