The Route to a Career in Economics

What is the Role of An Economist?

The role of an economist is to apply economic knowledge and economic theory in order to give advice and generate reports. They research data and collect information in order to analyse current events and predict future trends. They use specialised software and methods to come up with their findings which they then use to advise and inform businesses and governments. Economists work in various areas from taxation and interest rates to international development and health policy. They might analyse resource allocation in the NHS, advise various stakeholders on the implications of various policies or research global economic trends and developments.

Do I Need A Masters Degree to Become an Economist?

More than 25% of Economics graduates go on to further study once they have gained their undergraduate degree. Postgraduate study allows economics graduates to gain an area of speciality such as agriculture, regional economic development or education. While an MSc economics Masters degree is not essential for those who want a career in Economics it can open up many more doors. A Masters degree in Economics can help you to set yourself apart from other candidates, especially in competitive areas or industries or more specialised fields.

What Compensation Can Be Expected?

Starting salaries for economists compare well to other graduate opportunities. In 2009, economists could expect to start on between £25,000 and £35,000. Economists graduates tend to earn more than the average graduate by 20% or more. Salaries for both graduates and experienced economists vary widely, as could be expected from the many different areas where economists work, but banking, industry, consulting and financial services tend to be higher earning areas. A 2009 report showed that UK economists saw their salaries increase in 2008-2009 and three quarters were awarded a bonus, even with the recession ongoing.

How to Become an Economist?

Entry requirements for an undergraduate degree in Economics vary from institution to institution. While some courses require A-level maths, A-level Economics is not usually a requirement. However, studying Economics at A-level will allow you to get a grasp of the basics of Economic principles and help you to assess whether you would be interested in a career in the field. A-level maths will also be helpful, as many elements of undergraduate study in Economics require a firm understanding of mathematical principles

Simon OatesThe Route to a Career in Economics