The mainstream economics curriculum needs an overhaul
Diane Coyle 04 May 2014
The undergraduate economics curriculum is hugely influential, since today’s undergraduates are tomorrow’s policymakers. The massive policy failures before and after the Global Crisis have thus prompted a rethink. This column argues that there is a reasonable degree of consensus on the need for curriculum reform, but no agreement on whether this means rejecting the basic building blocks of the subject. Nevertheless, undergraduate courses in five or ten years will almost surely have changed considerably in character.
One of the delayed consequences of the financial crisis is a widespread and apparently growing desire to change how economics is taught. Students in a number of countries, including vocal groups in Chile and the UK, have recently intensified the demand for reform. One recent example is a report from the Post-Crash Economics Society at the University of Manchester (Post-Crash Economics Society 2014).
Education Global crisis
education, financial crisis, global crisis, academia, teaching, economics education, undergraduates
Greening Economics: It is time
Carlo Carraro, Marianne Fay, Marzio Galeotti 26 April 2014
The concept of environmental capital is throughly entrenched in policy dicussions but largely missing from mainstream economic curriculums. This column argues environmental externalities, climate change, and constraints on natural resources will constantly and deeply affect humankind’s future. The teaching of economics, especially growth economics, should stop ignoring them.
Shortly after the inception of the financial crisis, The Economist published an article on the split the crisis had brought about among macroeconomists and on the self-criticism some of the most renowned names of academia were applying to the discipline they have been teaching. Economists such as Robert Barro, Bradford DeLong, Paul Krugman, and Willem Buiter questioned the ‘economic model’ they had long used as a reference tool to initiate crowds of students to the dismal science.
growth, teaching, Green growth, natural capital, policy formation
What’s the use of economics? Introduction to the Vox debate
Diane Coyle 19 September 2012
Five years after Lehman’s collapse, economics is under fire both from outside and inside the profession for irrelevance, arrogance and more. This column introduces a new Vox debate focused on two questions: What’s the use of economics, and how should we be teaching it to the next generation?
This column is a lead commentary in the VoxEU Debate "What's the use of economics?"
Education Frontiers of economic research Global crisis
education, Economics, global crisis, teaching
The university as an internal labour market
Catherine M. Haeck, Frank Verboven 17 June 2010
How does a university organise its hiring and promotion policy? This column presents evidence on the personnel policy of a large European university. It suggests that the university is organised as an internal labour market, and while promotion dynamics depend on research and teaching performance, persistent administrative rigidities remain.
During the past decade policymakers have spent considerable effort to reform European universities. Aghion et al. (2008) provide a critical review of recent higher education policies and an agenda for desirable reforms. While European countries have coordinated quite intensively to reform their teaching programs and achieve compatible degrees throughout Europe, there has been little effort to coordinate reforms of the internal organisation of universities. As a result, European universities still show a large diversity in hiring, promotion, and tenure rules.
Education Labour markets
education, research, higher education, teaching