UPSC Economics Syllabus (Optional IAS Mains 2018 PDF)

UPSC Economics Syllabus (UPSC Mains Economics Notes PDF and also Hindi Books, Economics Question Papers) : Download UPSC Economics Syllabus in PDF for the upcoming year updated as per recent official notifications from the Central UPSC Exams Board. Economics is “a social science concerned chiefly with description and analysis of the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services”. Economics focuses on the behaviour and interactions of economic agents and how economies work. The overall UPSC Economics Syllabus for next exam has been officially released recently and we have provided below the updated details on that. With Proper preparation, UPSC Economics Syllabus can be easily taken over to the perfection.

Important Details on UPSC Economics Syllabus

Syllabus Scope 2 Sections
UPSC Economics Syllabus Download
Total Subtopics Nine
Preparation Time 675 Hours

Prelude to UPSC Economics Syllabus

Note First and foremost, you must talk to someone who has taken Economics as an optional earlier and take their advice. There has been a common misconception among the students that UPSC Economics Syllabus is a hard nut to crack and its better to leave it as an optional paper. You are absolutely wrong.

Even through the Economics Syllabus portion in UPSC looks very huge and hard to study, once you start reading through few chapters, you will come to an absolute conclusion that UPSC Economics Syllabus is one of the most interesting and easiest of all the papers in entire UPSC Syllabus.

UPSC Economics Question Papers

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Section A: UPSC Economics Syllabus

Advanced Micro Economics

  1. Marshallian and Walrasiam Approaches to Price determination.
  2. lternative Distribution Theories: Ricardo, Kaldor, Kaleeki
  3. Markets Structure: Monopolistic Competition, Duopoly, Oligopoly.
  4. Modern Welfare Criteria: Pareto Hicks & Scitovsky, Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem, A.K. Sen’s Social Welfare Function.

Advanced Macro Economics : UPSC Economics Syllabus

  1. Approaches to Employment Income and Interest Rate determination:
  2. Classical, Keynes (IS-LM) curve, Neo classical synthesis and New classical, Theories of Interest Rate determination and Interest Rate Structure.

Money – Banking and Finance : UPSC Economics Syllabus

  1. Demand for and Supply of Money: Money Multiplier Quantity Theory of Money (Fisher, Pique and Friedman) and Keyne’s Theory on Demand for Money, Goals and Instruments of Monetary Management in Closed and Open Economies.
  2. Relation between the Central Bank and the Treasury. Proposal for ceiling on growth rate of money.
  3. Public Finance and its Role in Market Economy: In stabilization of supply, allocation of resources and in distribution and development.
  4. Sources of Govt. revenue, forms of Taxes and Subsidies, their incidence and effects.
  5. Limits to taxation, loans, crowding-out effects and limits to borrowings. Public Expenditure and its effects.

International Economics : UPSC Economics Syllabus

(a) Old and New Theories of International Trade

  1. Comparative Advantage
  2. Terms of Trade and Offer Curve.
  3. Product Cycle and Strategic Trade Theories.
  4. Trade as an engine of growth and theories of under development in an open economy.

(b) Forms of Protection: Tariff and quota.

(c) Balance of Payments Adjustments: Alternative Approaches.

  1. Price versus income, income adjustments under fixed exchange rates,
  2. Theories of Policy Mix
  3. Exchange rate adjustments under capital mobility
  4. Floating Rates and their Implications for Developing Countries: Currency Boards.
  5. Trade Policy and Developing Countries.
  6. BOP, adjustments and Policy Coordination in open economy macro-model.
  7. Speculative attacks
  8. Trade Blocks and Monetary Unions.
  9. WTO: TRIMS, TRIPS, Domestic Measures, Different Rounds of WTO talks.

Growth and Development : UPSC Economics Syllabus


  1. Theories of growth: Harrod’s model,
  2. Lewis model of development with surplus labour
  3. Balanced and Unbalanced growth,
  4. Human Capital and Economic Growth.
  5. Research and Development and Economic Growth

(b) Process of Economic Development of Less developed countries: Myrdal and Kuzments on economic development and structural change: Role of Agriculture in Economic Development of less developed countries.

(c) Economic development and International Trade and Investment, Role of Multinationals.

(d) Planning and Economic Development: changing role of Markets and Planning, PrivatePublic Partnership

(e) Welfare indicators and measures of growth – Human Development Indices. The basic needs approach.

(f) Development and Environmental Sustainability – Renewable and Non Renewable Resources, Environmental Degradation, Intergenerational equity development.

Section B: UPSC Economics Syllabus

Indian Economy in PreIndependence Era

  1. Land System and its changes, Commercialization of agriculture, Drain theory, Laissez faire theory and critique.
  2. Manufacture and Transport: Jute, Cotton, Railways, Money and Credit.

Indian Economy after Independence : UPSC Economics Syllabus

 The Pre Liberalization Era

  1. Contribution of Vakil, Gadgil and V.K.R.V. Rao.
  2. Agriculture: Land Reforms and land tenure system, Green Revolution and capital formation in agriculture,
  3. Industry Trends in composition and growth, Role of public and private sector, Small scale and cottage industries.
  4. National and Per capita income: patterns, trends, aggregate and Sectoral composition and changes theirin.
  5. Broad factors determining National Income and distribution, Measures of poverty, Trends in poverty and inequality.

UPSC Economics Syllabus (UPSC Mains Economics Notes PDF and also Books, Economics Question Papers)

The Post Liberalization Era

  1. New Economic Reform and Agriculture: Agriculture and WTO, Food processing, Subsidies, Agricultural prices and public distribution system, Impact of public expenditure on agricultural growth.
  2. New Economic Policy and Industry: Strategy of industrialization, Privatization, Disinvestments, Role of foreign direct investment and multinationals.
  3. New Economic Policy and Trade: Intellectual property rights: Implications of TRIPS, TRIMS, GATS and new EXIM policy.
  4. New Exchange Rate Regime: Partial and full convertibility, Capital account convertibility.
  5. New Economic Policy and Public Finance: Fiscal Responsibility Act, Twelfth Finance Commission and Fiscal Federalism and Fiscal Consolidation.
  6. New Economic Policy and Monetary system. Role of RBI under the new regime.
  7. Planning: From central Planning to indicative planning, Relation between planning and markets for growth and decentralized planning: 73rd and 74th Constitutional amendments.
  8. New Economic Policy and Employment: Employment and poverty, Rural wages, Employment Generation, Poverty alleviation schemes, New Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme.

Also See Syllabus Details of Other Courses like:

UPSC Anthropology Syllabus UPSC Psychology Syllabus
GATE AE Syllabus CFA Level 1 Syllabus
FRM Level 1 Syllabus CS Professional Syllabus
UPSC Geography Syllabus UPSC Botany Syllabus
UPSC Zoology Syllabus UPSC Statistics Syllabus
UPSC Maths Syllabus UPSC Physics Syllabus

Conclusion on UPSC Economics Syllabus

It is always said that the wise men words are often neglected. However, we would like to again stress the fact that the Economics Syllabus in UPSC is one of the most important and crucial things that has to be properly taken care of.

Not just for examination point of view, Economics Syllabus in UPSC helps you in the overal development to become a good responsible officer who will play a crucial role in the development of the country in the decades to come.

Economics can be a good optional if you are extremely brilliant at it but i do have a few problems. Economicsis not going to help an ias in any possible way.

There has been a news circulating that, UPSC may remove optionals in coming years.mind you its not a rumor but actual happening in near future.

If readers have any further questions on UPSC Economics Syllabus, you can drop us a mail or even post your question below on our comments section.