Monday, October 15, 2012

Teaching Austrian Economic Theory

This weekend I had the pleasure to speak before the 12th Annual Economics Teaching Workshop co-sponsored by UNC-Wilmington and Cengage Learning.  My topic was "Teaching Austrian Economic Theory."  The attendees were professors and instructors (with a few grad students thrown in for flavor).  I was happily surprised to see several hands go up when I asked how many have heard of Austrian Economics.  

When I was asked to give the talk, I was given a wide latitude about what I could say.  While having such discretion is a wonderful thing, I found that I had very little idea who my audience would be.  After thinking about it, I realized that I had to do the following:

  1. Introduce and explain what Austrian Economics is.
  2. Show how it differs with the mainstream.
  3. Show how to teach it.
  4. Show why it is better.
  5. Do it for enough topics to be relevant.  (I chose to cover value theory, capital theory and business cycle theory.)
  6. And do it all in under an hour!
To be certain I talked quickly.  I don't think that I went too fast, however I did promise to post the PowerPoint presentation of the talk so that they weren't scrambling to write down a bunch of stuff. To fulfill that promise here are the PowerPoint notes.

Once again, I would like to thank my hosts for the event.  In particular Rob Burrus and Pete Schuhmann of UNC-W and John Carey of Cengage.


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