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- (The previous contents of the CZ:Economics Workgroup page, covering the years 2007 thru 2011, is archived with the talk page contents ).
If you are an economist - or a budding economist - who is considering making a contribution to Citizendium, this is a good place to start. It is also the place where economists and others can make comments and suggestions about the style and content of the economics articles.
J M Keynes touched on the problem of writing economics articles for an encyclopedia when he wrote "economics is a difficult and technical subject, but nobody will believe it". Unlike say, archeology, economics has an impact upon people's lives. They have to take some interest in economics because it affects so many of their choices. So there is a popular demand for simple explanations of this difficult and technical subject. The problem is how to meet that demand while, at the same time, meeting the demand of economics students and practitoners for a professional treatment of the subject.
Citizendium's "subpages" setup provides a ready-made solution to that problem by facilitating the adoption of a "parallel processing" format. The thinking behind the economics article format embodies the observation that there are a lot of well-educated people who are no longer comfortable with the use of charts equations and statistics (if they ever were), because do not have to deal with them in their day-to-day lives. The main pages are for them, and as well as avoiding charts and equations, those pages avoid closely-reasoned arguments and the use of economics jargon other than words and expressions that are in colloqual use. The "tutorials" subpages are for students and practioners of economics, and contain the sort of material that is to be found in economics textbooks, and the "addendum" subpages are both for them, and for people other than economists, who are familiar with the use of graphs, and statistics.
In addition to articles on individual topics, such as macroeconomics and taxation, there are articles on connected sequences of events, such as Great Depression and Sovereign default. The use of the "Timelines" subpages enables the additional dimension in such articles to be dealt with without disrupting the main page. The main page is then free to deal with the topic under a set of subject headings such as "monetary policy", "fiscal policy" etc, without interruptions to avoid temporal overlaps. Disruption of subject paragraphs by the intrusion of a geographical dimension can be avoided by dealing with it in country-by-country paragraphs on the Addendum subpage. Wikilinks can be used to make connections between paragraphs on the main page and those on the subpages.
The existing coverage of economics is less comprehensive than might appear, and there is room for improvement in many of the existing articles. Here are some suggestions for your consideration:
- health economics.
- transport economics.
- energy economics.
- development economics.
- economics of (you name it)
- economic history of (country).
- economic history of (industry, product, sport, etc).
- profile of an eminent economist.
- more on neuroeconomics and behavioural economics
- evidence from experimental psychology that bears on the limitations of the assumption of rationality in economics.
- the addition of wikipedia-style graphics to selected articles.
- something on Islamic finance.
- theory of the firm.
- forecasting models
- state capitalism
Making a start
CZ:How to edit an article tells you how to get started on an article.
Advice and assistance
Help can always be obtained by putting a request for it on Nick Gardner's user talk page.