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Should the UK government regulate Google, Facebook and other ‘tech giants’? Why do so many people sign up for expensive gym memberships and then never attend? Should the Bank of England cut or raise interest rates? And what do the various, possible post-Brexit trade agreements mean for our prospects as individuals and as an economy?

At its most abstract we might say that Economics is the study of scarcity and decision-making: what should we produce, how should we do so and to whom should we distribute the spoils? But that framework and way of thinking can be applied to any number of interesting questions, as illustrated above.

At Dulwich, Economics is offered in the Upper School, allowing students to develop a new view of the World and an insight into the ways in which society operates, from the day-to-day decisions made by consumers and businesses, to the macroeconomic issues at both national and international levels.

Topics studied in detail include:

  • How markets operate
  • Consumer behaviour and rationality
  • Free markets vs government intervention
  • Macroeconomic outcomes and objectives: growth, inflation, unemployment, trade
  • Trade and globalisation
  • Financial markets and their impact on the wider economy
  • Macroeconomic and microeconomic policy in practice

The department regularly welcomes expert visiting speakers from a range of backgrounds including business, politics and academia. Students undertake original research, give presentations, and use ICT extensively as part of the course. The department has its own suite of rooms including an ICT suite and is situated in the Lord George Building in the heart of the Upper School. Students augment their wider learning through a range of competitions, conferences and trips every year, alongside weekly meetings of a thriving Economics Society. The subject is very popular with boys in the Upper School, with close to half of students in the Remove choosing to study Economics.

Stand out achievements in the last few years

  • 120 students have gone on to study an Economics-related degree at university in the last 3 years.
  • 5 boys were successful in the 2017 round of applications to Oxford and Cambridge for Economics-related courses (2 for PPE, 2 for Economics and 1 for Land Economy).
  • On average 25% of students achieve an A* grade at A level, with 70% achieving an A or A* grade.
  • The department has run highly enjoyable and informative trips to New York, Belgium, Barcelona, the City of London and various other domestic locations.
  • Students have been highly successful in various competitions including: the Bank of England Target 2.0 Interest Rate Challenge, the ICAEW Business Skills competition, the IFS Student Investor Challenge and lastly, Young Enterprise, where one team from Dulwich reached the national final.
  • Attendance at weekly meetings of the Economics Society have grown substantially, and students are treated to an impressive array of visiting expert speakers, punctuated by highly enjoyable student-led meetings.
  • The department has set up its own library for students to use, complementing the healthy selection of reading material available in the Wodehouse library.

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Dr James Wisson BSc DPhil MPhil

Head of Economics