The economic way of thinking — to use the title of my favorite textbook — is essential for grasping the complex reality that we call economy and society. Also essential is clear and compelling communication of economic insights to a broad audience.
Alas, too few good economists have excelled at talking crisply and vividly to non-economists. The great communicators — Milton Friedman, Walter Williams, Thomas Sowell, Steven Landsburg, Russell Roberts, and (of course) Frederic Bastiat — are the exceptions.
We here at GMU Economics are doing our share to help remedy the problem: Russ Roberts teaches a graduate seminar each year for students who wish to enhance their skills at translating their economic knowledge into compelling prose.
Another effort underway along these general lines is being sponsored by the Market-Based Management Institute (along with the Association for Private Enterprise Education). Here’s the link to their Economic Communication Contest.
I urge students to enter, and professors to alert promising students to this opportunity.