Raj Chetty advise to college graduates..

Here is the piece. He advises students to take up academics as a career profession and within acads look at economics as well.

He says there are very few application to US univs from India (really?? I thought there were too many):

If you’re reading this article as a student in India, you’re probably deciding what career to pursue after college. And pursuing a career in academia as a Professor of Economics—which is my field—is probably not very high on your list. This article will try to convince you that a career in academics and scientific research is actually an option you should consider seriously.

Indians are surprisingly under-represented in PhD programmes in economics and other pure academic disciplines at the leading US universities. Every year, we receive hundreds of applications for the Economics PhD programme at Harvard from students in Europe, South America and China, but only a handful of applications from Indians. As a result, there are far fewer Indian professors relative to doctors, engineers and computer scientists.

Having grown up in India for eight years and followed the experience of my two sisters who went to college in India, I know that the lack of applications for PhD programmes from India is not caused by a lack of talent. There is an enormous pool of talented students at colleges in India who would be extremely successful in research and academia in the US. Many of these bright students choose to go to the private sector rather than academics.

Why are Indians under-represented in academics generally and especially in the field of economics?

He says there are 3 misconceptions:

  • Misconception 1: The job of a professor is purely to teach classes.
  •  Misconception 2: Academia is a very tough life, particularly financially.
  •  Misconception 3: Economics is not a ‘real science’ and does not use technical skills.

Hmm. I think  third point is not misconception but reality. I am actually surprised to see Prof Chetty selling acads in economics as a career based on this point. Yes there are technical skills and an econ these days is a more math guy but that is where the problem lies.

A better pitch would have been economics is a useful subject which has lost its credibility in recent years. We need good people who can get the credibility back by doing research which matters to humans and their decisions…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: