Royal Economic Society Annual Public Lecture at York ‘a widening participation success’

Posted on 4 December 2018

Professor Oriana Bandiera (LSE) spoke about ‘what economists really do’ to a large audience of school pupils from across the North of England.

UoY_Royal Economics Society_November 2018

The Department of Economics and Related Studies hosted the 2018 Royal Economic Society (RES) Annual Public Lecture on 28 November 2018. The talk was delivered by Professor Oriana Bandiera, director of the Suntory and Toyota Centre for Economics and Related Disciplines at the London School of Economics.

In an interactive presentation, Oriana argued that the subject of economics is about so much more than just money – a word commonly associated with the field. Economics is really about making a difference to people’s lives by seeking to understand the causes of the things that matter most to them – their livelihoods, their communities, their environment, their opportunities – and by thinking about how to make them better.

Drawing on her field work on the recruitment of community health workers in Zambia, she demonstrated how economics can be used to analyse and advise on policies to fight extreme poverty and promote economic development that transforms people’s lives.

In a packed auditorium of the new state-of-the-art Piazza building of the University of York, Oriana responded to a wide variety of questions on the state of economics, its role in the society, including topical issues such as Brexit.

A recording of the full presentation and the Q&A session and is available here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KEzLtbpEVg

The talk was first in a series of RES lectures to be held at York. Our department will be hosting the Annual Public Lecture for another two years.

Professor Jo Swaffield, Head of Economics at York, said: “We were delighted to welcome Oriana and the Royal Economic Society team to York for what was a lively, informative and inspirational talk on what economics is about and how it can transform lives of people in the UK and around the world.

“We were particularly pleased that we had around 100 pupils from state schools from across the North of England with us to share in this account of the research of one of our leading economists in the UK.

“The event was a great success from the point of view of widening participation in economics and university education more generally. The pupils spent the morning before the lecture discussing in small groups how economic tools could address great societal issues such as obesity, participating in computer lab experiments, and talking to our current students about university life.

“We look forward to hosting next year’s event and are keen to engage with schools even more widely next year so that even more pupils from across our region can benefit from the fantastic opportunities events such as this offer.”

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