Essay Competition

2016 Dorian Fisher Memorial Prize


We are delighted to present this year’s competition for A-Level and IB students, with a prize of £500 for the entry judged best and £250 each for the three runners up. There is also a prize of £500 for the school with the highest number of entrants. The four top winners, along with the other best entries, will all be invited to a special one-day event at the IEA in the Autumn term at which they will be given a certificate and the award. The prize for this competition is named after Dorian Fisher, the wife of Sir Anthony Fisher, founder of the IEA, who was a longtime supporter of the Institute and its work.

Entries should be submitted by post to Dr S. Davies, Head of Education, Institute of Economic Affairs, 2 Lord North Street, London SW1P 3LB.

The final deadline for this year’s competition is Friday 29th July.

An entry to the competition should contain the following three pieces of work.

1. A short essay, of roughly 1,300 words, on one of the following questions:

(a) Why should behavioural economics lead us to be sceptical about both some mainstream economics and calls for larger government?

(b) Recently the World Bank revealed that the proportion of the world's population living on less than $1.25 a day had fallen below 10%. How and why did this happen?

(c) In light of several countries now having negative nominal interest rates, can monetary policy have any real world macro-economic effects and what might they be?

2. A 500 word answer to one of the following two questions:

(a) What does 'entrepreneurship' mean to economists and why do they think it is important?

(b) Why is the concept of time preference such an important one for many economists?

3. A 500 word answer to the following question:

Identify an area of economics that you think should be given more attention in the A- Level or IB syllabus and say why this is so.

Anyone wishing to enter the competition should feel free to contact the IEA for guidance about selected reading by sending an email to The email should have “essay competition” in the subject line.

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