HOPE Center Holds Annual Summer Institute

Tuesday, June 25, 2019
A group photo of the Summer Institute Scholars

Summer may be quieter around Duke's campus, but the Center for the History of Political Economy (HOPE Center) is keeping plenty busy.

26 participants gathered at Duke from around the world for the 2019 Summer Institute on the History of Economics from June 10 through 19, 2019. The Institute focused on giving participants the tools to set up and teach their own undergraduate course in the history of economic thought. Most participants were graduate students in economics, but there was also a sprinkling of professors, as well as scholars in fields outside of economics, including sociology, philosophy, political science, history, and law. The focus was on the history of economics, but also on how one might go about teaching it, in a stand alone course or in classes where themes in the history of economics might be introduced. The Greeks, the mercantilists, Smith, Marx, Keynes, the institutionalists, behavioral economics—it’s all here! The sessions were run by Duke faculty members Bruce Caldwell and Jason Brent and by Steve Medema, who will be joining the economics faculty this July.

Director of the Center for the History of Political Economy Bruce Caldwell enjoys putting on the Institute every summer, saying, “I have to say that the annual Summer Institute is one of my personal favorites among the activities that the Center puts on. The scholars who came this year were smart, engaged and engaging; a super group.”

Participants also enjoyed the workshop, and found it immensely rewarding. In an email Caldwell received after the Institute concluded, a scholar said, “I really enjoyed the experience and found it incredibly engaging and stimulating. I was really pleased with the diversity of perspectives in the course and the openness to different thinkers in the course.”