Glasgow Economic Forum (GEF) is one of the largest student-led conferences in the United Kingdom. Our aim is to offer a broader narrative beyond classroom discussion and introduce students to a wide range of ideas while inspiring them to pursue economics further. The topic of the conference this year is ‘beyond black and white: understanding our complex world through economics’. We will be hosting renowned speakers specialising in the field of economics, who will give us insight into the world’s pressing issues including climate change, gender inequality, globalisation and transformation of society amongst others.
It’s a fortunate coincidence that this year’s conference is held on International Women’s Day (8th March), and we would like to celebrate this as we have invited Professor Sarah Smith, the head of the Economics department at the University of Bristol. She is also the co-chair of #DiscoverEconomics, a campaign by the Royal Economic Society which aims to attract more women, ethnic minority students, and students from state schools and colleges to study the subject at university. Economics lags behind the social sciences and STEM in terms of gender diversity: for economics, roughly 30% of the graduates are females whereas for maths, approximately 45% of graduates are women. Gender diversity matters because economics graduates go on to positions of power in the private and public sectors – and they should reflect the society they are helping to shape. Professor Smith will be talking about the role of women in economics and some of the possible causes and implications of the lack of diversity in the field, as well as discussing initiatives that might bring about needed change.
You can expect to see other important female speakers at the conference: Stefanija Veljanoska will address the impact of air pollution on health, Dr Saja Al Zoubi will emphasise the issues of gender and rural development, student speakers Anna Malova and Nasira Bradley will talk about cooperation in climate change and innovation, growth and productivity respectively.
We invite you to join us on the 7th to 8th of March at Sir Charles Wilson Building at the University of Glasgow. This event is not limited to economics students and, if you are interested in how the world functions today, this is a conference you ought to attend. Get your tickets through our website, or check out our Instagram and Facebook page for more information.
[Jolene Zhu – she/her & Hannah Sakhno – she/her]
[Photo credit: SRC]