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  • Writer's pictureAnas Abu

My Economics Story

My economics story has not been a ‘textbook’ journey. Full of highs, lows, stress points,

moments of sheer relief and extreme joy. Or maybe that’s what this hypothetical ‘textbook’

would include? I’m not sure but enough of the rambling, my path has felt a little bit different.

Like many, I didn’t study economics at A-Level. My sixth form did not offer it and I just chose what I enjoyed: Maths, History and Business Studies (French at AS-Level too but the less said about that the better!). I only formally came across economics as a subject when I was

considering what to study at university. I ended up being quite fortunate as I probably did the three best A-Levels for an economics degree, aside from economics itself, of course.

So, what drew me to an economics degree having never studied it? Well, it was a combination of a few things and did involve reading and discussions with lecturers. One reason was that I’ve always enjoyed writing long essays whilst doing complex manipulative work with numbers. The primary driver though was simply the desire to learn about the world

and analyse some of the most pressing problems we face.

Fast forward a few years and I now have a BSc in Economics and an MSc in Development

Economics. I had a love/hate relationship with economics throughout my studies and

became very disillusioned with just how relevant it truly was after my master’s. However, at

this point, I made a serious effort to do my own reading outside the walls of academia. This

was when I realised just how important economics is and most importantly for me, how it can

be used to make the world a better place. One of the key books which led to this mindset

shift was ‘Good Economics for Hard Times’ by Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo; I’d highly

recommend it.

Fundamentally then, I believe others should study economics as it offers an opportunity to

have a seat at the table and provide analysis that can change the world for the better. That’s

what I’m trying to do. I’m now an Assistant Economist for the Department for Digital, Culture,

Media and Sport where I’m enjoying learning and using economics for the public good.

The chapters in my story are still being written and I’m incredibly excited for what lies ahead.

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