Academic Staff

Professor Melvyn Coles BA (Cambridge), MSc (Southampton), PhD (Princeton)

Staff positionProfessor
E-mailmcole (non Essex users should add
Telephone4875 (non Essex users should add 01206-87 to the beginning of this number)
Office hoursThursday 3-4pm Friday 3-4pm.

After obtaining a first in Mathematics at Cambridge University,  Melvyn Coles took the MSc in Economics and Econometrics at Southampton University and then went on to study for his PhD in Economics at Princeton University. He has been professor of Economics at the University of Essex since 1997. During the years 2003-2006 he was instead an ICREA research fellow at the IAE (Barcelona).


PhD Economics [Princeton University].

Research interests
  • Equilibrium trade with frictions, especially labour
  • Marriage markets
Teaching responsibilities

    M.G. Coles and M. Francesconi (forthcoming) "On the Emergence of Toyboys: Equilibrium Matching with Ageing and Uncertain Careers," International Economic Review.

    K. Burdett,  C. Carrillo-Tudela and M.G. Coles (forthcoming) "Human Capital Accumulation and Labour Market Equilibrium, International Economic Review.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (2010) Equilibrium Wage Tenure Contracts with Heterogeneous Firms, Journal of Economic Theory
    A. Booth and M.G. Coles (2010) Tax Policy and Returns to Education, Labour Economics.

    A. Booth and M.G. Coles (2010) The Allocative Value of Romance, Journal of the European Economic Association.

    M. G. Coles, P. Jones and E. Smith (2010) Long Term Unemployment with Stock-Flow Matching, Macroeconomic Dynamics.

    M.G. Coles (2009) Optimal Unemployment Insurance in a Matching Equilibrium , Labour Economics, 15,4,537-559.

    M.G. Coles and B. Petrongolo (2008) A Test Between Stock Flow Matching and the Random Matching Approach, International Economic Review

, 49, 1113-1141.
    A. Booth and M.G. Coles (2007): A microfoundation for increasing returns in human capital accumulation and the underpartcipation trap. European Economic Review, 51, 1661-81.

    M.G. Coles and A. Masters (2007) : "Re-entitlement Effects with Duration Dependent Unemployment Insurance in a Stochastic Matching Equilibrium," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 31, 2879-98.

    M.G Coles, J. Lanfranchi, A. Skalli and J.G. Treble (2007): "Pay, Technology and the Cost of Worker Absence" Economic Inquiry,

vol. 45(2), pages 268-285.
    M.G. Coles and A. Masters (2006) "Optimal Unemployment Insurance in a Matching Equilibrium," Journal of Labor Economics, 24, 109-38.

    M.G. Coles and A. Masters (2004) "Duration Dependent UI Payments and Equilibrium Unemployment," Economica, 71, 83-97.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (2003) "Equilibrium Wage Tenure Contracts, Econometrica, 71, 1377-1404..

    M.G. Coles and J. Eeckhout (2003) "Indeterminacy and Directed Search" Journal of Economic Theory, 111, 256-276

    M.G. Coles and A. Muthoo (2003) "Bargaining in a Non-stationary Environment" Journal of Economic Theory, 109, 70-89.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (2001) "Transplants and Implants: The Economics of Self-Improvement," International Economic Review, 42, 597-616.

    M.G. Coles (2001) "Equilibrium Wage Dispersion, Firm Size and Growth," Review of Economic Dynamics, 1, 159-187.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (2000) "The Simple Analytics of Partnership Formation," in Panel Data and Structural Labor Market Models eds Bunzel, Christensen, Jensen, Kiefer and Mortensen, [Elsevier:Amsterdam].

    M.G. Coles and A. Hildreth (2000) "Wage Bargaining, Inventories and Union Legislation", Review of Economic Studies, 67, 273-95.

    M.G. Coles and A. Masters (2000) "Long Term Unemployment and Retraining in a model of Unlearning by not Doing," European Economic Review, 44, 1801-22.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (1999) Long Term Partnership Formation: Employment and Marriage," Economic Journal F307-335.

    M.G. Coles (1999) Turnover Externalities with Marketplace Trading, International Economic Review, 40, 4, 851-868.

    M.G. Coles (1999) "A Short Essay on the Single Currency" winner of the Daily Telegraph Euro-essay prize (U.K.), published June 1st.

    M.G. Coles and E. Smith (1998) "Wage Bargaining and Inventories" Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 23, 35-54.

    M.G. Coles and A. Muthoo (1998) "Strategic Bargaining and Competitive Bidding in a Dynamic Market Equilibrium," Review of Economic Studies, 65, 2, 235-260.

    M.G. Coles and R. Wright (1998) "A Dynamic Equilibrium Model of Search, Bargaining and Money," Journal of Economic Theory, 78, 32-54 [reprinted in Mita Journal of Economics, 90, 3 (1997), 21-30].

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (1998) "Separation Cycles' Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 22, 1069-91.

    M.G. Coles and E. Smith (1998) "Marketplaces and Matching" International Economic Review, 39, 239-55.

    M.G. Coles and A. Philippopoulos (1997) "Are Exchange Rate Bands Better than Fixed Exchange Rates? The Imported Credibility Approach" Journal of International Economics, 43, 133-53.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (1997) "Marriage and Class" Quarterly Journal of Economics, CXII, 141-68.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (1997) "Steady State Price Distributions in a Noisy Search Equilibrium" Journal of Economic Theory, 1-31.

    M.G. Coles and J.G. Treble (1996) "Calculating the Price of Worker Reliability" Labour Economics, 3, 169-188.

    M.G. Coles and E. Smith (1996) "Cross Section Estimation of the Matching Function" Economica, 63, 589-97.

    K. Burdett, M.G. Coles, N. Kiyotaki and R. Wright (1995) "Buyers and Sellers: Should I Stay or Should I Go?" American Economic Review, 85, 2, 281-286.

    M.G. Coles and J.G. Treble (1993) "The Price of Worker Reliability" Economics Letters, 41, 149-55.

    K. Burdett and M.G. Coles (1993) "Firm Size and the Distribution of Wages" in Labour Demand and Equilibrium Wage Formation, eds van Ours J.C., Pfann G. and Ridder G. [Amsterdam: North Holland].

    M.G. Coles and J. Malcomson (1989) "Contract Theory and Incentive Compatibility" in Current Issues in Microeconomics, 127-51, ed J. Hey [Macmillan:London].

Additional information

would like to retire to a tropical beach.

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