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Department of Economics
University of Mississippi

The Center for Economic Science and Economic Education (CESEE)

The Center for Economic Science and Economic Education was founded in March 2011.

The center’s mission is to educate the general public, teachers and educators, and policymakers about economic theory and policy. The center accomplishes this mission in three ways: policy analysis and outreach to policymakers, writing on economic topics for a popular audience, and assisting the Mississippi Council on Economic Education with its continuing education efforts for teachers and educators.

Faculty affiliated with the center use the tools of economics to analyze various public policies, including policies that are important to Mississippians. Examples of the sort of output produced by the center relevant to Mississippians include an analysis of a 2021 proposal by the Mississippi state legislature to reform the tax code as well as a scholarly paper on U.S. maritime policy. In addition to providing this analysis, affiliated scholars speak to area groups in Mississippi about their work and about other policy issues of interest to those groups.

The second part of the center’s mission is public education. The center sponsors the weekly Economic Forces newsletter on Substack, co-authored by Associate Professor and Senior CESEE fellow Joshua Hendrickson. The newsletter discusses various aspects of economic theory and examples of how the tools of economics can be used to understand the world around us as well as ongoing policy debates. The newsletter is written for a general audience, is read by thousands of readers each week, and is popular with economic educators as a supplement to their courses.

The CESEE’s current activities also include assisting the Mississippi Council on Economic Education in delivering its Master Teacher of Economics program to high school teachers in the northern part of the State. Through the MCEE, the UM CESEE also partners with related Centers at Mississippi State University, Delta State University, the University of Southern Mississippi, Mississippi College, and Millsaps College. This program is quite successful at increasing economic literacy among teachers and educators. According to the MCEE,

Teachers’ average score on a test of economics literacy is 62 before MCEE training and 86 after the training, a 40 percent increase. The Department of Education confers the “Master Teacher of Economics” designation.

For more information, people can contact the following CESEE affiliated faculty:

Dr. Mark Van Boening, CESEE Director.

Dr. Ronald Mau, CESEE Co-director, Public Policy.

Dr. Joshua Hendrickson, CESEE Senior Fellow.