I guess it depends on what you want to do, but I would rank Duke>= Cornell > Rochester >= Maryland
I'm seriously thinking about applying to Duke and Rochester this year. How do you guys rate the department at Duke and Rochester? If I'm correct, Duke has been improving in the rankings over the years and I would assume it to be equal if not better than Rochester ? I believe their strength lies in Macroeconomics and Econometrics, the former true for Rochester too.
Also, I thought Cornell was a top notch school but after following TM for some time and having looked at the placements, I think they might have slipped below Maryland and Rochester.
The core strengths of the department at Rochester are micro theory and macro. We also have a number of junior faculty doing interesting research in labor, but the lack of seniors in the field has made placement of labor students hit-or-miss. The department is small enough that students who couldn't see themselves in any of those fields would probably be better off going elsewhere, but I strongly recommend applying to people whose interests match the faculty's research areas.
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