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What Economists Teach and What Economists Do

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  • David Colander

Abstract

Fifty years ago what was taught in the principles of economics course reflected reasonably well what economists did in their research. That, however, is no longer the case; today what economists teach has a more nuanced relation to what they do. The reason is that the economics profession and the textbooks have evolved differently. The author addresses the implications of the changes that have occurred in the profession for the way economics is taught and the way economics is presented in the micro principles textbooks. First, he summarizes the changes he sees happening in the profession. Second, he discusses the stories that the principles textbooks tell in micro. Third, he discusses how those stories might change to reflect better what economists currently do.

Suggested Citation

  • David Colander, 2005. "What Economists Teach and What Economists Do," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(3), pages 249-260, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jeduce:v:36:y:2005:i:3:p:249-260
    DOI: 10.3200/JECE.36.3.249-260
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Allgood, Sam & Bayer, Amanda, 2016. "Measuring College Learning in Economics," MPRA Paper 85104, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. repec:elg:eechap:17588_16 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. David Colander, 2007. "Pluralism and Heterodox Economics: Suggestions for an “Inside the Mainstream” Heterodoxy," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 0724, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
    4. David Colander, 2018. "Moving beyond the rhetoric of pluralism: Suggestions for an "inside-the-mainstream" heterodoxy," Chapters,in: How Economics Should Be Done, chapter 16, pages 228-239 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Lourdes Espinoza & Carlos Gustavo Machicado & Katia Makhlouf, 2007. "La Enseñanza de Economía en Bolivia y Chile," Development Research Working Paper Series 10/2007, Institute for Advanced Development Studies.
    6. Carlos Gustavo Machicado & Lourdes Espinoza & Katia Makhlouf, 2009. "La Enseñanza de Economía en Bolivia y Chile," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 2176, Inter-American Development Bank.
    7. Happe, Kathrin & Balmann, Alfons, 2008. "Doing Policy In The Lab! Options For The Future Use Of Model-Based Policy Analysis For Complex Decision-Making," 107th Seminar, January 30-February 1, 2008, Sevilla, Spain 6588, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Juan Luis Jiménez & Jordi Perdiguero & Ancor Suárez, 2011. "Debating as a classroom tool for adapting learning outcomes to the European higher education area," IREA Working Papers 201109, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Jun 2011.
    9. Christian Grimm & Jakob Kapeller & Stephan Puehringer, 2018. "Paradigms and Policies: The state of economics in the german-speaking countries," ICAE Working Papers 77, Johannes Kepler University, Institute for Comprehensive Analysis of the Economy.
    10. Emily C. Skarbek, 2010. "From Promiscuity to Commitment: Peter Boettke's Approach to Mentoring "Mainline" Economists," Journal of Private Enterprise, The Association of Private Enterprise Education, vol. 26(Fall 2010), pages 143-152.
    11. Green, Tom L., 2013. "Teaching (un)sustainability? University sustainability commitments and student experiences of introductory economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 135-142.
    12. Carlos Gustavo Machado & Lourdes Espinoza & Katia Makhlouf, 2009. "La enseñanza de economía en Bolivia y Chile," Research Department Publications 4632, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.

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