Welcome to the course website for “Natural Language Processing for Economists”.This course is taught as an online guest course for the students of Munich Graduate School of Economics (MGSE) in October 2022.
What is this course about?
Natural Language Processing (NLP) is an area of research focused on analyzing human languages computationally and making computers understand and interact with humans, in their language(s). NLP is a part of many day to day applications we use, such as search engines, virtual assistants on your smartphones and various functionalities in your email provider. Considering that many areas of study also rely on a lot of textual data for knowledge dissemination and communication, NLP is now being used as a method to explore discipline specific research questions in many areas. Economics too is one of them. From measuring news sentiment and connecting it to the nation's economy to extracting key information from policy documents, there are many uses of NLP in economics research. In this course, we will introduce the methods of working on Natural Language Processing problems, and explore how it can be used to address some research questions in economics that require analysis of textual data.What will the students learn?
Upon successful completion of this course, students are expected to:
- be familiar with some foundational concepts in modern day NLP
- understand where NLP is useful for economists, and what are some of the common methods used , and
- given a problem description in economics research involving textual data, know what methods from NLP can be used to solve the problem, and design a step by step process to solve it.