Helsinki Graduate School of Economics

Studying economics at Hanken you have the opportunity to take courses at Aalto and University of Helsinki as well. It’s an great way to sample a variety of topics within the discipline.

Hello! My name is Maggie Knorr, and I’m a first year Master’s student in economics. I’m originally from the great state of Minnesota in the U.S.A. I have wanted to move back to Finland ever since I lived in Iisalmi for a year as a Rotary Youth Exchange Student in 2011-2012.  In 2016, I completed my Bachelors in economics and philosophy at Hamline University, and then taught English in Malaysia and worked in Student Affairs for a year before deciding to go back to school.

I think one of the coolest things about studying economics at Hanken is their participation in Helsinki Graduate School of Economics (GSE). Through this cooperation with Helsinki University and Aalto, I am able to take courses at all three universities which offers me a wide range of economic topics to study. I also got to attend the Opening Ceremony of the GSE this October, and the Finnish Nobel Prize in Economics winner Bengt Holmström speak!

So far I’ve taken 3 economics classes at Hanken, 3 at Aalto, and 2 at University of Helsinki. Each school has their own strengths and group of experts, and I would definitely encourage everyone to take at least one course at each school. My favorite class at Hanken has been Behavioral Economics, which looks at the way traditional assumptions about human rationality are often inaccurate, and how we can account for that in economics. 

By far my favorite class so far from the GSE has been Development Economics. It is taught by Aalto University in collaboration with United Nations University- World Institute of Development Economics Research (WIDER). Each lecture was an expert in a different field of development economics, so we got exposure to many different topics and lecture styles all in one class. In September I also got a chance to attend their conference, held here in Helsinki, where researchers came from around the world to present.

Many of my classes have been incredibly challenging, and pushed me to learn and understand economics at a much more theoretical and mathematical level. I am thankful for the variety of courses I have been able to take here, and look forward to incorporating them into an interesting Master’s Thesis topic next spring.

Thanks for reading, and please feel free to contact me at for any questions you might have about the economics program, or life here in Helsinki.