Friday, April 20, 2018 | ePaper

Rethink approach to economics

  • Print


G. John Cole :
It's been an unprecedented decade for global economics.
While many of the headlines have fixated upon the big players and the larger aggregate economy, ordinary people have become more fascinated than ever in the role economics plays in our everyday life, from the ebb and flow of the property market to the macroeconomics of managing the household budget.
It's a fascinating field of study, since everything is connected in ways that are widely open to interpretation by different schools of thought.
It follows naturally that the pluralist approach to economics has gained a lot of traction in recent years. The philosophy of pluralism in economics recognizes the value of multiple traditions of thought in contemporary scholarship - including Austrian, feminist, institutionalist, Marxian, and Post Keynesian - and seeks to connect and balance disparate cultures and systems for the common good. The idea's key sentiments can actually be traced back over centuries and even millennia, to the idealism and religious pluralism of Warring States-period China.
If the idea of studying economics from a pluralist point of view already seems intriguing, there are additional benefits to consider. Whether you want to work in banking, in government, in an NGO, or in business, gaining a broad understanding of the different ways that people analyze economic phenomena allows for a more complex, adaptable, and creative practice - which improves employability.
This knowledge and skill base also puts the postgraduate student in a stronger position should they wish to specialize in a particular economic tradition at a later date.
Secondly, the pluralist approach to economics is part of a very contemporary turn towards personal and institutional responsibility within the sectors most closely associated with the subject. There is a whole movement that wants to rethink the academic discipline of economics and situate it within real-world contexts, answering to a diverse culture of needs and demands. Simply put, pluralist economics resonates with the progressive ethics of our time.
Focusing these tools towards the area of development economics can reveal exciting new ideas and solutions regarding the big issues of the 21st century, such as poverty, inequality, and globalization. One university has mastered and is continuing to develop this combinatory approach: SOAS University of London.
With over 5,000 students from 133 countries on campus, it's a dynamic and truly international place to make connections and reflect on global economic tendencies, with a particular emphasis on development economics. Over half of the students are from outside of the UK, attracted to SOAS by the world-class faculty of renowned academics, thinkers, and professionals.
Students will find that a program such as the MSc Economics are encouraged to develop a deep understanding of particular countries and issues, based on a concrete analysis of history, institutions, and political economy. It's an opportunity that will certainly inspire postgraduate economics students to rethink their approach to economics.
(John is a digital nomad and freelance writer for higher education and marketing publications. A native Englishman, he is always on the move but can most commonly be spotted in Norway, the UK and the Balkans).

More News For this Category

Who owns your work?

Who owns your work?

Alyssa Walker :You work. You work a lot. You produce papers, theses, prototypes, and lab results. You write about all of it. It's yours, right?Wait-you're doing all of this

International Management in two languages

International Management in two languages

G. John Cole :International management is all about creating global business strategies to foster positive change in international companies and organizations. Study business management with an international dimension and

Improving global literacy

Improving global literacy

Sophie Edwards :Literacy experts and advocates gathered in Oxford this week to discuss the latest thinking around how to promote global literacy.Despite recent improvements, it remains a major challenge

Careers for outdoor recreation

Careers for outdoor recreation

Joanna Hughes :Outdoor recreation contributed $373.3 billion to the US GDB in 2016 -- surpassing other industries like utilities and mining. Not only that, but it's expanding: With a

The uncompromising teacher

Arun Kanti Chatterjee :Recent growing incidents of violence on many school and college campuses leading to the manhandling of teachers sadden me very much. We are terrified all the

Population growth and higher education in Bangladesh

Population growth and higher education in Bangladesh

Dr. P R Datta and Mark T. Jones :For anyone interested in Bangladesh and its future success, an important starting point has to be the current and projected population

Study Logistics and Transportation Law

Study Logistics and Transportation Law

Joanna Hughes :With the logistics and transportation industry growing at a staggering rate of 23 percent every 10 years, the next few years will see a giant leap in

Rethink your approach to economics

Rethink your approach to economics

G. John Cole :It's been an unprecedented decade for global economics.While many of the headlines have fixated upon the big players and the larger aggregate economy, ordinary people have

Zero Discrimination Day

Zero Discrimination Day

Alyssa Walker :March 1, is Zero Discrimination Day, a day sponsored by UNAIDS. UNAIDS is highlighting the right of everyone to be free of discrimination. This includes discrimination based

We can't own girls, we owe them

We can't own girls, we owe them

Julia Gillard :Just two weeks ago, we learned of yet another tragic abduction by Boko Haram of girls in northeastern Nigeria. A near replay of the 2014 mass kidnapping