What is Economics?
Economics is the study of how goods and services are produced, consumed, and distributed amongst individuals and businesses. It considers how resources are utilised, why this may be so and the implications for local, national and international markets.
The notion of scarcity is particularly important to the study of economics. Scarcity is where goods and services may be limited because demand (the number of people wanting the product) exceeds supply (the amount of the product being produced).
Economics involves the examination of consumer behaviour and the factors that influence it. Economists also consider the other side of the coin, examining commercial decisions and the interrelation of the two within a dynamic, ever-changing economy.
These considerations span from the small-scale (microeconomics) to the national or international scale (macroeconomics). Whether they are focused on the day-to-day workings of businesses in a local market or examining the impacts of fiscal policy on a nation’s currency, all economists are concerned with devising effective solutions to support the movement of goods and services from suppliers to consumers.
Policy is also a core aspect of the study of economics. Economists understand the various government responses to movements within the financial and corporate sector and make predictions as to the effects these will have on individuals, businesses, and the country as a whole.
Economists are also increasingly contributing to areas of social development and sustainability. Their awareness of the impact of social benefit programs on the market, and their understanding of market behaviour enables the implementation of effective methods of support that help countries achieve manageable and sustainable growth.
Economic policies and decisions affect us every day – even if we aren’t aware of it. The decisions made by economists impact what we buy, and how, the way we choose to work, the government support we may receive and more. For those invested in understanding more about the exchange of resources, there are numerous opportunities to explore.
What does an economist do?
Almost every industry will need to engage with economic theory to some degree, however there are a few fields to which economists tend to gravitate toward.
As an economist for a large, or even global corporation, you’ll advise your organisation on patterns of consumer behaviour, and formulate strategies to use these patterns to market goods and services in a particular way. You’ll take the lead on ensuring efficient ratios of capital to labour, to ensure that the business is not under-resourced or over-staffed. Your understandings of the price mechanism will enable you to ensure products are competitively priced, and ensure your organisation succeeds in gaining a higher market share.
The analytical and communication skills that develop from studying economics may drive you towards a career in economic policy. Working within state or federal governments, you’ll be heavily involved in devising programs to stimulate consumer spending, boost the capability of businesses, and grow a stronger economy. You may find yourself working for treasury or helping to craft budgets that balance the needs of multiple players within the economy.
The field of economics is highly transferrable to international markets. As an economist overseas, you could work for international organisations such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development or the World Bank . Your skills will be attractive to multi-national corporations who will need advice on the inner workings of different economies, and the most efficient ways to produce, deliver, and market their goods and services.
Studying economics will empower you to take the reins in managing your own company, whether this be a small to medium enterprise or a vast organisation. You’ll understand how to balance competing interests and hone your highly developed decision-making skills.
No matter where you choose to focus, economics provides a way for you to influence and understand the behaviour of others.
What jobs are there in economics?
Jobs within economics span the private and public sectors.
Studying the Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Economics at JCU will provide you with management, decision-making, analytical and communication skills, enabling you to take on many different roles across your career.
JCU Commerce studies will equip you with the knowledge and skills to embrace micro- or macroeconomics. Bachelor of Commerce graduates have a strong knowledge of interest rates and government expenditure, monetary and fiscal policy, economic modelling and more. You’ll have experience working with real-world policy dilemmas, enabling you to take on your own projects with confidence.
With a JCU Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Economics, you may work in roles such as:
- Policy adviser
- Investment analyst
- Financial risk analyst
- Economic researcher
- Chief financial officer
Why study Economics at JCU?
Economists need the curiosity to explore the key drivers of economic growth and government policy. This combines with the analytical skills and contemporary knowledge needed to engage with rapidly developing economic systems.
Studying Economics at JCU gives you the tools to examine complex systems, interpret your findings, and make complex decisions that impact both individuals and organisations. You’ll have the capabilities to manage the movement of resources, the economic functions of a business or the policy direction of a government.
JCU combines the fundamental economic principles and theories with opportunities to put your learning into practise. Through a combination of real-world scenarios and work integrated learning, you’ll emerge feeling confident in your ability to adapt to whatever industry you choose.
Take the opportunity to specialise your study and career goals even further. In the Bachelor of Commerce at JCU, you can choose to complement a major in Economics with a minor in International Trade, or Financial Management. You’ll emerge with the skills needed to succeed in your chosen industry.
Economies don’t always run to business hours, and we know that you may not either. That’s why you’ll have the flexibility to study Economics online, or at on campus at JCU Townsville.