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GTAP Events: 28th Annual Short Course in Global Trade Analysis

28th Annual Short Course in Global Trade Analysis

"Theory and Applications of Computable General Equilibrium Analysis with the GTAP Model"

Virtual Short Course icon
Due to the ongoing pandemic, travel restrictions, and challenges faced with global vaccination rollout, course organizers have decided to transition to a virtual format.

Dates/Deadlines (USA Eastern Time Zone)

Course Application
Course Application March 21
Acceptance Notifications April
Course Dates
Phase 1 May 10 - July 18
Phase 2 July 24-25
Phase 3 July 26-30

Courses phases are not offered independently.

General Information
Dates: Phase 1: Asynchronous Online Learning May 10 – July 18, 2021
Phase 2: Live Instruction July 24-25, 2021
Phase 3: Asynchronous Small Group Work July 26-30, 2021
Location: Virtual Course
Offered by: Center for Global Trade Analysis, Purdue University
Registration Fee: Standard Rate $4,000 USD
Student Fellowship Rate $1,500 USD
Course Schedule: The course schedule will be provided to those accepted into the course. When live meeting times are scheduled, differing time zones will be taken into consideration to ensure as fair as possible meeting times for all.

Course Content

Course Objectives and Expectations
The successful participant will demonstrate fluency with the GTAP Model code and data base by designing an economic policy experiment and communicating analysis to the course cohort and teaching team. The learning objectives fostered by the distribution of course activities reflect the ultimate goal and include:

  • introducing participants to the standardized framework (GTAP Model, v7) for conducting global policy analysis in an applied general equilibrium setting
  • providing participants with hands-on training with software that has been tailored to instruction and collaboration in economic analysis with minimal software manipulation overhead
  • delivering participants an opportunity to interact with economists working on global trade and resource use issues, and provide an efficient entry point to the international network of AGE modelers and policy analysts using GTAP data and models

Course Structure
The GTAP Short Course is an intensive training course in the economics of global policy analysis delivered by a team of GTAP specialists in data, model construction, and policy analysts. The course is delivered in three, online phases. Note that course phases are not offered independently and the precise plan of study, with meeting times (when applicable) will be provided to those accepted into the course. When live meeting times are scheduled, differing time zones will be taken into consideration to ensure as fair as possible meeting times for all.

Phase 1 consists of asynchronous, online learning, during which participants should expect to spend approximately 4 hours/week on the course. Phase 1 aims to give students practical experience using the software environment for solving GTAP models while reviewing economic components of the model in a partial setting (e.g., production behavior or market equilibrium, but no international trade). Students will also learn the construction of, and analysis with a global economy model with bilateral trade and relevant policy instruments.

  • Phase 1 - Prep Week
    • Course software installation and setup
  • Module 1 - "Introduction to GTAP's Software Environment"
    • Module Objectives - Students gain extensive experience with the RunGTAP software and GEMPACK programs used for solving the GTAP Model. Upon completion of this module students will:
      • know the layout and functions of RunGTAP 'tabs'
      • be able to read the GTAP Model in its native TABLO coded environment
      • have a functional understanding of the GTAP Data Base and its structure for modeling
      • be able to implement a simple shock in the GTAP Model environment
    • Topics Covered:
      • The RunGTAP Interface
      • Understanding Model Implementation in the TABLO Language
      • The GTAP Data Base
      • Simulation in GTAP
  • Module 2 – "Production and Supply in GTAP"
    • Module Objectives – Students begin their study of GTAP behavioral assumptions in this module. Upon completion of this module students will:
      • understand the theory of production as implemented by GTAP
      • gain facility with the nested CES production structure used in the model
      • examine the flows and shares specific to the production side of the model
      • have completed their first simulation and analysis of a GTAP policy experiment
    • Topics Covered:
      • Theory of production
      • Operationalizing production and supply in GTAP
      • Production data
      • Production application
  • Module 3 – "Consumer Demand in GTAP"
    • Module Objectives – Students move from the production to end-user side of the model in this module. Successful completion of the module will give students experience with:
      • treatments of final demand in general equilibrium and the specific assumptions made in GTAP
      • the GTAP "Regional Household" and the empirical form of public and private demands
      • the data flows and parametric assumptions that drive demand behavior in GTAP
      • examining simulation outputs including percentage change variables and updated data
    • Topics Covered:
      • Consumer theory
      • Operationalizing final demands in GTAP
      • Demand data
      • Demand application
  • Module 4 – "Prices and Policy Instruments"
    • Module Objectives – In this module, we connect the demand and supply sides of regional economies by examining the price system in GTAP. After finishing this module students will:
      • know the major policy instruments on transaction in GTAP
      • understand how policy shocks transmit to the price system
      • be able to identify the data components that define base equilibrium policy levels
      • examine simulation outputs from multiple interacting policy instruments
    • Topics Covered:
      • GTAP policy wedges
      • The GTAP price system
      • Policy data, evaluating flows at different 'prices'
      • Multiple policy shocks application
  • Module 5 – "Balance and Equilibrium Conditions in GTAP"
    • Module Objectives – In this module, we consider the equilibrium conditions pertinent to the single-region setting. The module training will introduce students to:
      • the accounting theory underlying GTAP
      • navigation of market clearing equations in GTAP v7
      • the accounting basis of the GTAP data matrix
      • simulation concepts for linearized economic models
    • Topics Covered:
      • Theory of Markets
      • Equilibrium Conditions in the GTAP
      • Market Clearing Data
      • Revisiting Linearization
  • Module 6 – “Introducing the GTAP Open Economy”
    • Module Objectives – In this module, we expand our view of the GTAP Model to the open economy setting by returning to the equilibrium conditions previously studied in a single region setting and exploring the additions required to model trade linkages between regions. In this module students will gain knowledge of the:
      • GTAP multi-region economy and its key linkages
      • fundamental accounting relationships of the multi-region economy in GTAP
      • expanded price system required for the multi-region setting
      • construction and balance of the core GTAP data and tools for creating aggregated databases from core GTAP data
    • Topics Covered:
      • Overview of GTAP CGE Framework
      • Accounting and Market Clearing in Open Economy GTAP
      • Price Linkage Relationships in Open Economy GTAP
      • GTAP Data Base I
      • Lab – Using RunGTAP Better
  • Module 7 – “Advanced Theory and Implementation in GTAP”
    • Module Objectives – In this module we focus on advanced treatment of underlying behavioral theory of supply and demand side of the model including the explicit treatment of demand for goods by source (domestic or specific bilateral trading partner). This extends directly into incorporation of demands by source (domestic vs foreign) in the GTAP version of the Armington import demand structure. With the full complement of behavior relations in hand, we are prepared to explore the quantitative regional welfare calculation in GTAP – including the partitioning of the measure of EV into its specific contributions. At the close of the module students will have knowledge of:
      • GTAP’s production structure, including the handling of technical change and foreign sourcing of inputs
      • GTAP’s final demand structure, including the calibration of CDE demand parameters from literature estimates of price and income elasticities
      • GTAP’s handling of substitution in trade and mechanisms for modeling the price transmission effects of trade cost margins
      • the equivalent variation measure and tracking the contributions to regional welfare from its efficiency and terms of trade components
    • Topics Covered:
      • Behavioral Equations for Production
      • Final Demand
      • Trade and Transport Behavior
      • Welfare Decomposition with the GTAP Model
  • Phase 1 - Wrap-up Week
    • During the final week of phase 1, participants will have a chance to catch up on any incomplete coursework and pose any remaining questions pertaining to the material covered before moving onto phase 2.

Phase 2 consists of live instruction that aims to give students experiential training with the GTAP Model that incorporates understanding of the key behavioral assumptions, equilibrium structure, and policy levers that are specified in the GTAP Model. The two days of instruction will be taught live online as a series of lectures and laboratories. During lab time, students will have the opportunity to follow an instructor’s demonstration with time dedicated to student practice with an instructor monitoring the group for questions and other assistance.

  • Topics Covered:
    • Interpreting Model Results
    • Closure Rules in Multi-region Economy Models
    • Global Investment Handling
    • GE Mechanisms and Real Exchange Rates

Phase 3 is the culmination of the course, giving students the opportunity to prepare their own global economy investigation by working in small groups, while checking in with instructors to meet predefined milestones to replicate prior work done with the GTAP Model and data base. It is in this third, capstone phase of the course, where students gain the experience in scenario design, model tools, and analysis techniques that will prepare them to become contributors to global analysis in the GTAP Network of researchers. Select research areas for small group projects may include, but are not limited to the following. Final offerings are ultimately determined by the instruction team, current research trends and developments, and formed by reviewing student capabilities and requests. The curriculum and instruction team work to ensure that the core learning objectives and experience remain identical regardless of which extension replication a student completes. The replication exercise is not a jump-start on a specific research agenda – it is a capstone of phases 1 and 2 that culminates in a final deliverable presentation. Students are provided access to all replication and extension materials after the course ends. It is anticipated these materials will be key resources for students in continuing the type of self-directed study necessary to continue to hone skills and advance research skills with GTAP. On the final day of the course, small groups will deliver their presentation live to the cohort and instruction team.

  • Sample research topics for small group projects
    • Commodity trade and regional free trade agreements
    • International farm and food policy measures
    • Energy policy and international policy measures
    • Environmental and land use policy assessments in a global setting
    • Migration and labor


All participants are expected to have a strong foundation in micro-economics. This should be at the level of a calculus-based graduate course in micro-economic theory. Since the course software is designed around a PC environment, it is essential that each participant have access to such a machine. No prior programming or modeling experience is required. Due to the web-based nature of the course, participants will need access to a high-speed internet connection. The online assignments and course project will be implemented in the context of the RunGTAP software interface for GEMPACK. This is a Windows environment for conducting applied general equilibrium analysis. RunGTAP is designed to allow users to focus on economics with the programming details being largely taken care of behind the scenes where it runs GEMPACK programs. GEMPACK is an algebraic modeling language which permits the user to write out the model in a transparent fashion. It is specifically designed for application to large-scale, applied general equilibrium models in a policy-oriented environment.

March 21st Deadline

Individuals interested in taking this course must apply on the GTAP website. All applications will be reviewed following the deadline. Those accepted into the course will receive an email detailing how to register and arrange for payment. Note that application does not guarantee acceptance.

Registration Rates
The registration fees (in USD) for this course are detailed below and include all materials required during the course as well as instruction. Revenue collected will cover Center for Global Trade Analysis staff time devoted to planning and holding the course. The registration fees do not include a license to the current version of the GTAP Data Base, which is not required for the course. Participants wishing to purchase this, must do so separately.

Registration Rates (USD) All Registrants
Standard Rate $4,000
Student Fellowship Rate $1,500

Student Fellowships
A limited number of fellowships may be available to current students working on, or who are interested in, learning and applying CGE modeling to inform policy debates regarding the most pressing questions related to global economic analysis. The fellowships cover $2,500 towards the standard registration fees, reducing the amount owed by the recipient to $1,500. To apply for a fellowship the following items must be included in a single PDF document, in the order listed, and uploaded on the application form. Applications missing any of these items will not be considered.

  • CV
  • Two-page (maximum) narrative describing your area(s) of interest, accomplishments, and current/future research directions. To the extent possible, identify why the application of an economy-wide analytical framework will enhance the impact of your research, as well as beneficiaries of the research. Please address how your previous training and professional/academic experience have prepared you for formal policy analysis.
  • Contact information for two references (professional or academic)

ll cancellations must be emailed to Ginger Batta. Registered participants who are unable to participate will receive a 50% refund until May 2, 2021. No refunds will be made after this date. Deferments to later courses are not allowed.

System Requirements

Participant computers and setup must meet the following specifications. All software and files needed for the course not listed below will be provided.

Computer Requirements

  • Windows 7 or later
    • Macs can be used, but users must either be able to dual boot to Windows or install/access Windows through a virtual machine. Note that technical support for Macs will not be provided.
  • 32-bit or higher
  • i5 or higher processor
  • 500MB free hard drive space
  • 1GB RAM
  • Administrator access (or ability to have course software installed)

Other Requirements

  • Reliable internet connection (broadband recommended)
  • Microsoft Office
  • Adobe Reader or Acrobat
  • Zip utility program
Contact Information
Ginger Batta (
Senior Program Manager
Center for Global Trade Analysis
Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University
403 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2056 USA

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Center for Global Trade Analysis
Department of Agricultural Economics
Purdue University
403 West State Street
West Lafayette, Indiana 47907-2056 USA

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