Econometric Game 2013

General

On the 9th, 10th and 11th of April 2013, the most talented econometricians from all over the world came to Amsterdam to compete against each other in a challenging and socially relevant case

The first day

After months of preparation, in the morning of the 9th of April, the committee was ready to start the week. They were all looking forward to meet the contestants, case makers and members of the jury. In the Mozes & Aäronkerk, located at Waterlooplein, the chairman of the committee officially opened the Econometric Game 2013. Thereafter Alexander Rinnooy Kan gave his opinion about the future of econometricians, and the case makers Jörg Breitung and Matei Demetrescu gave an introduction about the case. This year’s topic was ‘The effects of fiscal policy on economic growth’. Dean Han van Dissel of the University of Amsterdam closed the opening ceremony with his welcoming word.

After lunch the participants were guided to the University of Amsterdam where they would be working on the cases for the next three days. They had until 5 p.m. to do research about the subject. After they joined diner, the participants went back to the hotel to prepare themselves for the next day.

The second day

Wednesday the 10th of April the participants started working on the first case. After the case makers gave a short introduction about the case, the teams had until 6 p.m. to hand in their paper. After a long day of hard work and some stressful moments at the end of the day, the committee guided all the participant to the restaurant. While the participants were enjoying a well-deserved diner the hard work for the six jury members began. Around 11 p.m. the jury members joined the participants in the Heeren van Aemstel, near Rembrandtsquare. They announced the top 10 universities that would proceed to the finals. The selected universities were: Seoul National University, Trinity College Dublin, Nanyang Technological University, University of Bristol, University of Essex, University Carlos III Madrid, University of Copenhagen, Warsaw School of Economics, Tilburg University and in particular we were really proud of our own team, the University of Amsterdam, mainly because they didn’t make it to the finals for a couple of years. With this amazing list of universities most of the finalists immediately returned to their hotel. For the non-finalists, and also some of the finalists, the nightlife of Amsterdam was a complete different challenge than the one they had faced the days before.

The final day

Early in the morning on thursday the 11th of April, while the non-finalists tried to get some more sleep, the finalists were already on their way to the University. At 9 a.m. the case makers hand out the final case and after a short introduction the finalists began. They had until 4 p.m. to work on a new paper and to prepare a presentation.

Meanwhile a group of non-finalists got a guided tour from some of our committee members. Despite of the rain, they enjoyed their walk through the beautiful city centre of Amsterdam.  In the afternoon, at 2 p.m. the Econometric Game Congress sponsored by PwC took place again in the Mozes & Aaronkerk. PwC opened the congress with speaker Jaques de Swart. Thereafter professor Siem Jan Koopman, one of the judges, and Matei Demetrescu gave a presentation about this year’s topic. At 5 pm the finalists joined the congress to present their solutions to the case.

After the congress the whole group moved to Marie at Marie Heinekenplein where they had dinner and waited for the judges with their results.  Around 11 p.m. the redeeming word came and the case makers Jörg Breitung and Matei Demetrescu named the University Carlos III Madrid winner of the Econometric Game edition 2013. Warsaw School of Economics who became second and the winners of last year’s edition, the University of Copenhagen ended third. After some final words of the case makers and chairman the Econometric Game 2013 was officially ended. The committee and board of VSAE can be proud of this amazing event and it is now up to the next year’s chairmen, Kees Ouboter, to organize another successful and great event in 2014.

Case

The topic of the Econometric Game 2013 was how fiscal policy effects economic growth.

Econometric Game 2013 Case

Casemakers and jury

The casemakers in 2013 were prof. Joerg Breitung and prof. Matei Demetrescu.

Prof. Joerg Breitung received his PhD in1992 from University Hannover. In 1993 he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Tinbergen Institute (University of Amsterdam). In 2001 he became an associate professor at the University of Göttingen and since 2002 he is a full professor of econometrics at the University of Bonn. His research interests are univariate and multivariate time series, forecasting and the analysis of panel data. He has published in Journal of Econometrics, Econometric Theory, Journal of Business and Economics Statistics, Econometrics Journal, Econometric Reviews etc. and he is an Associated Editor of Economics Letters, Econometrics Journal and Computational Statistics. Furthermore he is a research consultant of the Deutsche Bundesbank and the German Institute of Economic Research (DIW) in Berlin.

Prof. Matei Demetrescu received his PhD in economics in 2005 at the Goethe University of Frankfurt. From 2006 to 2007 he was a post-doctoral researcher at the same univeristy, Chair for statistics and econometric methods. From 2007 to 2008 he did the Max Weber Post-doc fellow at the European University Institute in Florence. He returned tot the Goethe University where he worked as a junior professor for Applied Econometrics from 2008 to 2010. Moreover in 2009 he received his PhD in Industrial Engineering at the “Politehnica”University in Bucharest. Currently he is professor for econometrics at the university of Bonn. His research interests are Long-run relations, Long-range dependence, Forecasting with asymmetric loss functions, Nonlinear models, Financial data, Cross-unit dependence in panel data, Nonstationary panel data models and Macro-panels. He has published in various journals such as Journal of Business and Economics Statistics and Economics Letter.

The jury consists of prof. dr. D. van Dijk, prof. dr. D. Osborn, prof. dr. S.J. Koopman and prof. dr. P. Vlaar. The case makers are also part of the jury.

Prof. dr. D. van Dijk is a professor of financial econometrics at the Econometric Institue, the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE). His areas of special interest are volatility modelling and forecasting, high-frequency data, asset return predictability, business cycle analysis, and non-linear time series analysis. Professor van Dijk has published widely in all the major journals in the field including, among others, the Journal of Banking and Finance, the Review of Finance, the Journal of Applied Econometrics, the Journal of Business and Economic Statistics, the Journal of Econometrics, and the Review of Economics and Statistics.

Prof.dr. D. Osborn is the Robert Ottley Professor of Econometrics at the University of Manchester, Uk. She was born and raised in Sydney, Australia, where she studied for undergraduate and master degrees before going to the London School of Economics for her PhD. Except for a two year spell working on the forecasting team at the National Institute of Economic and Social Reasearch in London, Denise has spent her entire career at the University of Manchester, where she has been a professor since 1992.

Prof. dr. S.J. Koopman is Professor of Econometrics at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and research fellow at the Tinber gen Institute, both since 1999. He is currently also a Visiting Researcher at the European Central Bank, Research Division. The research interests of Siem are statistical analysis of time series, financial econometrics, simulation-based estimation, Kalman filter, economic forecasting and other topics in time series econometrics. He fullfills editorial duties at the Journal of Applied Econometrics and the Journal of Forecasting.

Prof. dr. P. Vlaar studied economics at the Vrije University Amsterdam. After his PhD in econometrics at the Maastricht University he worked as a researcher at the Dutch Central Bank (DNB). In this position, he investigated a broad spectrum of topics ranging from monetary transmission in Europe, inflation forecasting, exchange rate economics, and several financial topics. In May 2008, he decided to leave the central bank, and started working for APG as head ALM modelling.

Findings

The top 3 of the Econometric Game 2013 were:

  1. Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
  2. University of Copenhagen
  3. Warsaw School of Economics

Committee

From left to right: Gwendolyn Stuitje (Acquisition), Timo van der Veen (Media), Olivier Go (Case), Maya Laboyrie (Chairman), Susanna Teulings (Facilities), Milan Schinkelshoek (Universities)