Busting myths with Discover Economics

Discover Economics’ (DE) is a three-year campaign launched in October 2019 which aims to improve diversity in the economics profession by broadening its appeal to potential students. Frontier is delighted to have supported DE since its launch as a founding partner, reflecting our broader commitment to our own Diversity and Inclusion initiatives.

DE provides potential students with key information about career options for economics graduates, but has previously had to rely on limited analysis or personal testimony. On a pro bono basis, a team of our economists undertook a project to enable DE to produce materials highlighting in detail the career options available to economics graduates, and to spread the message that economics training opens up a wide range of possible opportunities The report has been launched today and can be found here.

Using real-time, novel labour market data on job advertisements in the UK in 2019 collected by Burning Glass Technologies, we analysed the types of jobs where economics skills are required by employers to answer the following three key questions:

  1. What do economics graduates do?
  2. What could economics graduates do with the skills they gain from a degree?
  3. Which high-profile employers are advertising jobs economics graduates could do?

Some highlights of our findings were:

  • Nearly half (45%) of economics-related and economics-specific jobs were not in London or the South East.
  • Over 192,000 economics-related jobs were advertised in 2019 that economics graduates could do with the skills gained from their degree.
  • An economics degree allows graduates to work across a variety of different sectors, ranging from tech and healthcare, to media and government.
  • Some of the biggest employers in the UK requiring economics or economics-related skills were the NHS (5,700+), Amazon (750+), and Sky (460+).
  • Economics-related and economics-specific jobs in the tech industry included those in the “Big 5” (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Google) and other companies such as Spotify, Deliveroo, Sony, Netflix and IBM.

Frontier Associate Director, Andrew Leicester, said:

“Our comprehensive analysis of economics jobs busts two myths. First, that ‘economists only work in banking and finance’, and second, that  ‘economics jobs only exist in London’. Having this data will help Discover Economics to promote diversity in the economics profession using facts rather than anecdotal information.”

We’re delighted to continue supporting Discover Economics. If you’d like to know more about the campaign, please visit the Discover Economics website.

For more information, please contact us on media@frontier-economics.com or at  +44 (0) 20 7031 7000.

Career options for economics graduates