The RSA Citizens’ Economic Council is proud to launch, in partnership with Economy, a toolkit promoting economics for everyone.
‘Discovering the economy around you’ supports citizens to identify features of their lives within the economy, to understand more about economics and economic language, as well as to take action and to empower themselves to change the economy. Reema Patel, Programme Manager of the RSA Citizens’ Economic Council introduces the three-part toolkit. As Joe Richards at Economy illustrates, making the economy simple isn't necessarily the answer - we need to ensure we talk about and engage with economics in a way that allows people to identify with it.
Economics isn’t just for everyone, it’s about everyone. For us, engagement with economics is a personal journey – certainly, our experience on the Economic Inclusion Roadshow and on running the Citizens’ Economic Council has demonstrated to us how important it is that people feel able to connect and relate their everyday life to what can appear at first to be an incredibly intimidating concept.
Language about economics can often be confusing and dominated by jargon. A recent poll by YouGov (2016) found that only 12% of the UK public feel like the media and politicians tend to talk about economics in a way that is accessible and easy to understand. Many of the citizens we have engaged with have reported feeling alienated by the language decision makers and experts have used about economics.
The 'Understanding' part of the toolkit:
- Outlines what the economy is and how different parts of it are connected,
- Explains frequently used economics terms in the news,
- Visualises, in the form of a map of the economy (above), how the different parts might fit together.
The RSA Citizens’ Economic Council is also due to launch a series of supplementary online materials, The Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Economy, which will curate economics content and information from across the web to help increase understanding of the economy.
‘What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality’ (Plutarch)
Identifying where you stand in relation to the economy, and understanding the economy better are key components to eventually feeling and being empowered to change the economy.
In this part of the toolkit, we encourage citizens to explore their views on the future of the economy, to map out what it is about the economy that matters most to them, and to come up with a statement of intent on how they might change the economy.
Download the toolkit:
Please complete the form below to download 'Discovering the economy around you':
Feel free to use the toolkit in a classroom, with a group of friends, at a family gathering, over a coffee or at a pub session – anywhere you like!
If you cannot see the form please enter your details here
Let us know what you think!
If you do use it, please let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org about your experience and feedback. There’s a prize to be awarded in January 2018 to one lucky person who took the time to feed back to us about their use and application of the toolkit.
Getting to grips with the economy is a journey – join us on it.
Megan Corton Scott
In the current populist era an active initiative such as the Citizen’s Economic Council is not only necessary, but a breath of fresh air argues Megan Corton Scott.
Nick C Jones
Everyone has an interest in the success of the economy. But it’s not always easy for the public’s voice to be heard in the rough and tumble of economic debate. The question is why?
Maeve Cohen, Director of Rethinking Economics, discusses why the Citizens' Economic Council report should recommend a reform of economics education.