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Economics Discussion Forums


Wouldn't it be nice if there were a place where economists can pose questions and get help from other economists?

Wouldn't that be very helpful for undergraduate and graduate students who are trying to learn economics? But also for researchers who look for data sources, references, methods, ...?

For software, online forums of this kind are commonplace. Even experience programmers consult them all the time. For learning new languages, they are essential.

Economics needs its own discussion forum.

For this to work, the forum must require registration. Posts cannot be anonymous. The discussion must be moderated. Otherwise, we end up with another facebook or twitter.

Here are the forums that I know about:

  • EconSpark
  • organized by the AEA
  • registration required, moderated
  • volume is currently quite low
  • Econ StackExchange
  • currently listed as "beta"
  • registration required, moderated
  • focused on Q&A, not discussion
  • there is reasonable volume, but questions and answers tend to be basic

I found that is overrun by spam.

It seems to me that StackExchange could be the place to pose specific questions and EconSpark could be the place for more open ended conversations.

I propose that we all point our students to those two forums to get some volume going.