Political Economy

Political economy is the study of production and trade and their relations with law, custom and government; and with the distribution of national income and wealth. As a discipline, political economy originated in moral philosophy, in the 18th century, to explore the administration of states' wealth, with "political" signifying the Greek word polity and "economy" signifying the Greek word "okonomie" (household management). The earliest works of political economy are usually attributed to the British scholars Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, and David Ricardo, although they were preceded by the work of the French physiocrats, such as François Quesnay (1694–1774) and Anne-Robert-Jacques Turgot (1727–1781).

In the late 19th century, the term "economics" gradually began to replace the term "political economy" with the rise of mathematical modelling coinciding with the publication of an influential textbook by Alfred Marshall in 1890. Earlier, William Stanley Jevons, a proponent of mathematical methods applied to the subject, advocated economics for brevity and with the hope of the term becoming "the recognised name of a science". Citation measurement metrics from Google Ngram Viewer indicate that use of the term "economics" began to overshadow "political economy" around roughly 1910, becoming the preferred term for the discipline by 1920. Today, the term "economics" usually refers to the narrow study of the economy absent other political and social considerations while the term "political economy" represents a distinct and competing approach.

Political economy, where it is not used as a synonym for economics, may refer to very different things. From an academic standpoint, the term may reference Marxian economics, applied public choice approaches emanating from the Chicago school and the Virginia school. In common parlance, "political economy" may simply refer to the advice given by economists to the government or public on general economic policy or on specific economic proposals developed by political scientists. A rapidly growing mainstream literature from the 1970s has expanded beyond the model of economic policy in which planners maximize utility of a representative individual toward examining how political forces affect the choice of economic policies, especially as to distributional conflicts and political institutions. It is available as a stand-alone area of study in certain colleges and universities.

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Matching Political Economy Colleges

Georgetown University

Four or more years; Private not for profit; $51,720 average out-state tuition; $51,720 average in-state tuition

University of Washington-Bothell Campus

Four or more years; Public; $34,473 average out-state tuition; $9,909 average in-state tuition

SUNY College at Old Westbury

Four or more years; Public; $16,320 average out-state tuition; $6,670 average in-state tuition

Tulane University of Louisiana

Four or more years; Private not for profit; $48,920 average out-state tuition; $48,920 average in-state tuition

University of Southern California

Four or more years; Private not for profit; $53,448 average out-state tuition; $53,448 average in-state tuition

Hillsdale College

Four or more years; Private not for profit; $25,540 average out-state tuition; $25,540 average in-state tuition

Beloit College

Four or more years; Private not for profit; $48,236 average out-state tuition; $48,236 average in-state tuition

Scholarships for Political Economy Majors

Bullet name award deadline Link
 

CIA Undergraduate Scholarship Program

Central Intelligence Agency

Up to $42,230 July 18, 2021 See Details
 

CIA Undergraduate Scholarship Program

Central Intelligence Agency

award

Up to $42,230

deadline

July 18, 2021
See Details
 

Homecoming Scholars Award

BeyGOOD

$25,000 Varies See Details
 

Homecoming Scholars Award

BeyGOOD

award

$25,000

deadline

Varies
See Details
 

Ray and Kathy LaHood Scholarship

Dirksen Congressional Center

Varies Varies See Details
 

Ray and Kathy LaHood Scholarship

Dirksen Congressional Center

award

Varies

deadline

Varies
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William Randolph Hearst Endowed Fellowship for Minority Students

Aspen Institute

Varies April 26, 2021 See Details
 

William Randolph Hearst Endowed Fellowship for Minority Students

Aspen Institute

award

Varies

deadline

April 26, 2021
See Details