Why Economics is for Everyone: A short manifesto.

The global financial crisis in 2008 transformed our world. The Government has borrowed £124 billion to bail out the banks and the Bank of England has spent £375 billion on Quantitative Easing. It is estimated that the UK economy lost between 1 and 7 trillion pounds[1] in output as a result. But how many people actually know what Quantitative Easing and output are? We are economics students and we still struggle to make sense of it all. Economic recessions and financial crises affect us all but so few people understand anything about what causes them and how we can build a healthy economy.

Nearly six out of 10 unemployed young people polled said anxiety had stopped them from sleeping well, over half said feeling anxious about unemployment stopped them from asking for help while 41% said it stopped them from leaving the house[2].  Forty percent of families are ‘too poor to play a part in society’ and can’t afford things like a weeks’ holiday in the UK a year or a second hand car[3]. Our economic circumstances influence who we are, how we feel and what we do.

We believe that all citizens in the UK must have a basic knowledge of economics and the confidence to use it both as a requirement for democracy to function effectively and for our own wellbeing. Understanding a bit about economics and fostering a civil society in which it is vigorously discussed can help us feel more in control of our lives. This is why economics is for everybody.


[1] According to the Bank of England’s calculations

[2] According to a survey of 2,265 16 to 25-year-olds published in a new report by youth charity the Prince’s Trust.

[3] According to a recent report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation

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