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School event challenges perceptions of economics

Updated: May 14

Students from schools across the country discovered that a career in economics is about far more than finance at an interactive event run by the CAGE Research Centre and Discover Economics.

GCSE and A level geography, history and economics students heard from senior academics at the centre and took part in interactive activities which looked at aspects of British colonialism and political history.

Using examples from a series of videos specifically aimed at schools, the young people created scenarios using data and analysis skills which explained why some parts of the world, particularly Africa and India, are less developed than others.

The event is part of a national campaign to help schools and their students to look at political history from a new angle and inspire young people into a career in economics.

School and student feedback:

“I've never ever thought about how much taxes impact our day to day lives” Year 12 economics student.

“I learned about many factors that influence development in the economy” Year 10 history student.

“I liked the learning and understanding of what economics actually is” Year 10 history student.

“It was really insightful in the role of economics in history and opened our students’ eyes to new ideas and possibilities.” History teacher

Bishnupriya Gupta, Professor of Economics and CAGE Research Director said:

“I hope that everyone who attended the event now has a taste of how economics helps us understand the enduring effect of history on the economy and society today.

“There are different narratives of the impact of colonialism but often very little statistical evidence to support the arguments. As economists, we are good at dealing with data. And digitisation over the last twenty years has made it easier to use historical data to understand the longer-term impact of colonisation on the colonies themselves but also on the countries that colonised them.

“Data is the common theme across this campaign which uses contemporary and historical evidence to understand the enduring effect of colonisation.”

Sam McLoughlin, Senior Campaign Manager at Discover Economics said:

“This event gave school students an insight into the way economics is key to understanding our history and how it can be used to tackle some of the most important issues in our society today.

“Not all young people have access to economics at school so it is vital that we have projects like this that can inspire more diversity in the field. We are delighted to partner with the CAGE Research Centre and look forward to developing more activities and resources together for schools.”

About the project

Drawing on its world class expertise in economic history and its global academic network, CAGE has brought together internationally renowned experts – associates, friends and alumni of CAGE and the University of Warwick – to explore the long-term impacts of colonisation and imperial interventions on the economy and society of Africa and India.

The project is delivered in partnership with Discover Economics, a Royal Economic Society campaign, whose aim is to broaden the appeal of economics to potential students; change their perceptions of economics and economists; and attract more students from under-represented groups (women, state school/further education college students and minoritised ethnic groups).

Click here to watch the School Series videos now!

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1 Comment

7 days ago

Dear organisers,

Having reviewed your website postings for some time, I wish to suggest that it is time for a serious improvement to be made in the following matter. Macroeconomics badly needs to be properly understood without the confusion of it being a pseudo-science. Below is my article about it with references to more of my earlier research work.

Best wishes,

David Harold Chester MSc. (author).



Making Macroeconomics a Much More Exact Science


Today macroeconomics is treated inexactly within the humanities, because it appears to be a very complex and easily confused matter. But this does not give it fair justice, because we should be trying to find a viable approach to the topic and examine it…

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