The best way Dr. Lee Stitzel sees it, his EconBuff podcast is just not breaking new floor. It’s simply an extension of what pursuits him and what pursuits his college students and people round him.
“Economics has loads to say in regards to the world we observe,” stated Stitzel, assistant professor of economics at West Texas A&M College. “The very first thing I inform individuals who ask about economics is that it’s human motion. What’s stunning about economics is it has the instruments and a manner for us to suppose, to see the seen and unseen, the unintended penalties.”
Stitzel teaches a graduate course in macroeconomics, a course he enjoys particularly as a result of the scholars need to be taught. Stitzel bought into the behavior of sending the category weekly emails of economically associated tales that both pertained to the category or Stitzel simply thought had been thought-provoking. He would usually obtain a half-dozen or extra replies to his e mail.
“One semester, I had a scholar say, ‘Hey, can I keep on the e-mail chain after this class?’” Stitzel stated. “That went on for a number of semesters. College students appeared enamored with these. College students two or three years after the category needed to proceed to get these emails that could be in regards to the pandemic or what the feds are doing.”
From that was born the EconBuff podcast. It’s touched on matters with an financial bent that will relate not solely to graduate college students and undergrads, however to the rank and file as properly.
The primary episode was in October 2019. The twenty sixth was launched Feb. 19. It was the primary time for a visitor host with Stitzel, who teaches a sports activities economics class, because the interviewee. The topic: the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal from 2017. Dishonest scandal? Economics?
“Sports activities supplies us a singular alternative to grasp human conduct as a result of it provides perception you wouldn’t usually have in different companies,” he stated. “Sports activities is a case examine of human conduct. What causes a workforce to cheat? Economics provides us the instruments to quantify the advantage of the dishonest, the destructive of it, the why it occurred.”
Stitzel has relied totally on the college of the Paul and Virginia Engler Faculty of Enterprise for his or her experience. However he additionally has had visitors from different universities in addition to from Amazon. The podcasts are roughly an hour – some round 55 minutes, however most stretch past that. (They are often discovered on on-line at econbuffpodcast.wixsite.com/mysite or on the BuffEcon YouTube channel.)
Among the many greater than two dozen matters are some weighty monetary ones – “Time Inconsistency in Latest Financial Coverage,” “Monopolies,” and “Government Compensation.”
However there have been 5 podcasts on COVID-19 – from its macroeconomics to the fiscal and financial response, and “The Good, Unhealthy, and Ugly of the Response to COVID-19.”
The GameStop quick squeeze on the inventory market involving Reddit and Robinhood that nearly nobody understands? There are two podcasts on that difficult controversy to interrupt it down.
There are different well timed podcasts, like Dr. Rex Pjesky’s breakdown of the influence of the proposed minimal wage enhance. In early February, Dr. Patricia Papachristou of Christian Brothers College in Memphis, Tenn., mentioned “Authorities Incentives in Vitality Manufacturing,” pertinent particularly because the grid breakdown in Texas’ report chilly.
“I need to contact on issues that folks discover attention-grabbing and provides them financial perception into that,” Stitzel stated. “The objective is to seek out financial thought in many alternative matters and fields.”
That’s why there are podcasts that will not fall beneath the standard financial umbrella — defunding the police, the game of curling, minor league baseball in Amarillo, Medicare for all, and the newest one on the Astros’ dishonest scandal. All are examined with an financial angle.
Stitzel tells his visitor that the target market is roughly an undergraduate degree or grasp’s degree of financial understanding. It’s not Ph.D degree, but it surely’s not fifth grade both.
“The matters are broad sufficient that we’ve got a bunch of potential listeners on the market regardless of the subject,” he stated. “We’re going to provide them one thing they will take away from each episode. One factor I believe I do comparatively properly is I’m fairly good at synthesizing info and if somebody is a Ph.D and speaking about quick squeezes and margin calls the place listeners can get misplaced, I say, ‘For the listeners at house, what do you imply by that assertion?’”
Stitzel, a local of Fritch, is a 2010 graduate of WT. He bought his Ph.D in economics from the College of Oklahoma in 2016 and returned to his alma mater that very same 12 months to start educating. His colleagues have comprised a bulk of his visitors and their willingness to take action has eased the anxious seek for sources.
Stitzel teaches macroeconomics and microeconomics, and in addition teaches a course on sports activities economics. The course has been within the catalog since 2007, however Stitzel is believed the primary one to show the course. He cities sports activities as a singular option to examine human conduct and sports activities intersecting with extra conventional financial venues.
“However sports activities in and of itself is necessary. It’s properly past a billion-dollar trade. It’s culturally necessary and we’ve got the financial instruments to measure that,” Stitzel stated.
If Stitzel may rub his podcast magic lamp for a sports activities financial visitor, he would get an knowledgeable on the influence of latest stadiums on native economies – a subject close to and pricey to him – one of many main professional sports activities commissioners like Adam Silver of the NBA or Rob Manfred of MLB, or a baseball normal supervisor like a Brian Cashman of the Yankees.
“There are a variety of metrics to measure how the podcast has been acquired, however I’ve been happy,” he stated. “The cool factor in regards to the podcast is it appears to be taking up a component of what I consider the standard podcast in that persons are discovering it as a result of they’re within the subject.
“It’s beginning to bounce out of the WT viewers and make an influence on the broader world of people who find themselves focused on what it has to say – why did the GameStop factor occur, for instance? The one factor is the podcast is just not large enough to attract criticism but.”
Editor’s notice: This column initially appeared on the WT web site.
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