New York, NY, November 22, 2010 --(PR.com
)-- The Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET), launched with a $50 million pledge from George Soros to promote changes in economic theory and practice through research grants, Task Force groups, academic partnerships, and conferences, recently launched its Campus Outreach Program. Led by INET’s Executive Director Dr. Robert Johnson, the outreach program has already reached six institutions of higher learning, and has included presentations and discussion from INET Advisory Board members and Nobel Laureates Joseph Stiglitz and George Akerlof, recent INET Grantee Professor Barry Eichengreen and colleagues Brad De Long and Cristina Romer from the University of California at Berkeley. The Institute’s Campus Outreach Program engages with students and their professors at select colleges and universities to address the role of new economic thinking in wake of global economic crisis.
“The college campus is a place of great stimulation and a fantastic number of possibilities, and in our economic and financial climate, students face daunting decisions as they prepare themselves for the future,” commented Professor Joseph Stiglitz, 2001 Nobel Laureate and INET Advisory Board member. “The Institute’s Campus Outreach Program is a key platform for communicating with students to discuss the realities of our current economic system and to engage them in our global efforts to effect change.”
The Campus Outreach Program directly aligns with the Institute’s mission to nourish an environment of open discourse and to empower the next generation with the necessary support to advance the culture of change. Sessions look specifically at economics in academia, the challenges faced by the economics profession in the aftermath of the crisis, and what must be done to change the prevailing paradigms in economics. INET’s Executive Director Dr. Johnson is the primary host of the campus events, which typically feature at least one additional member of INET’s Advisory Board or another prominent economist.
“INET is directly engaging with students to discuss the process of becoming an economist in our current economic state,” commented Dr. Robert Johnson, Executive Director of INET. “During our sessions we are addressing questions like: what inspires people to become economists? What is the moral purpose of an economist? What is the adequate preparation for becoming an economist? What should the future of the economics profession look like? We are talking with students about the importance of their future role in the economy.”
INET’s Campus Outreach Program kicked off with events at Williams and Amherst Colleges, on Oct. 14. Dr. Johnson and Professor Stiglitz shared perspectives on the global economic crisis and discussed the role played by the economics profession in the crash of the global economy; students noted the restrictions of economic thinking in academia and the importance of challenging the current paradigms. On Oct. 25, Dr. Johnson and Professor Akerlof led the event at Swarthmore College also attended by students and faculty of nearby Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges. They addressed the importance of students and student creativity in defining the future of economics, while conversations centered on the models and economic paradigms that have proved inadequate and debated the notion of “fairness” in the global economy. Most recently Dr. Johnson addressed students and faculty from the University of California at Berkeley on Oct. 28, along with Berkeley Professors Barry Eichengreen, Brad DeLong, and Christina Romer, which included a discussion of the INET grant recently awarded to fund the Berkeley Economic History Laboratory.
“I think the way to make change is to invest in the next generation of scholars on these topics,” affirmed Gautam Rao, a third year economics PhD student at U.C. Berkeley. “In some sense, to infiltrate the economics profession by investing in people who are thinking about these important issues in new and interesting ways.”
The Institute’s Campus Outreach Program will continue to engage students and faculty at select institutions across the country over the coming semesters. For further details regarding the Campus Outreach Program, including requesting a session at your college or university, please visit: http://ineteconomics.org/initiatives/campus-outreach
About the Institute for New Economic Thinking:
Launched in October 2009 with a $50 million commitment from George Soros and driven by the global financial crisis, the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET) is dedicated to empowering and supporting the next generation of economists and scholars in related fields through research grants, Task Force groups, academic partnerships, and conferences. INET embraces the professional responsibility to think beyond current paradigms. Ultimately, INET is committed to broadening and accelerating the development of innovative thinking that can lead to insights into and solutions for the great challenges of the 21st century and return economics to its core mission of guiding and protecting society. For more information please visit http://www.ineteconomics.org/