As of May 2019, the IDEAS ranking of the research productivity of all US economics departments ranked the Williams College 51st overall, well above all other liberal arts college economics departments, and above many well-regarded mid-tier research universities. Williams was also at or near the top of rankings of research productivity of liberal arts college economics departments in studies published in 2016, 2008, and 1997. We have an active seminar series where department members and economists from other institutions present their research. The department maintains three working paper series, including a general departmental series, and specialized series on development economics and topics in the economics of higher education.
The department is part of Northeast Universities Development Consortium (NEUDC), a major forum for the field of development economics, and has occasionally hosted the annual NEUDC conference.