New Monash-Warwick public portal showcases fresh sector of economics research

21 October 2021

Papers from Honours graduates Simon Ricketts and Molly Paterson feature on the portal..

A first-of-its-kind portal publicly showcasing exciting research from emerging economists globally has been launched by Monash Business School and its international alliance partner, Warwick University.

The best research by non-PhD Economics students from the Monash-Warwick Alliance has been made available on the public Warwick Monash Economics Student Papers platform, offering the opportunity of a wider audience – including prospective employers – for their ideas.

Believed to be the first of its kind worldwide for an Economics department, the portal displays research by undergraduate, Honours and Masters students, highlighting research excellence in both departments.

The result of the well-established links between staff in Warwick’s Department of Economics and Monash Business School, papers were selected based on their quality and originality, and submitted only by invitation from the WM-ESP Editorial Board with representatives from both universities.

Monash graduate Molly Paterson’s paper Gender and Disadvantage in the Evolution of Test Score Gaps is on the portal – and she says it has already sparked conversations with current work colleagues about her research and policy interests.

Ms Paterson, who graduated in 2020 with a double degree in Arts/Commerce and Honours in Economics, is now a Graduate Consultant with KPMG Australia.

“In future, I envision it helping in displaying to future employers my research capability and policy interests,” she says.

She is also expanding and refining her paper with her Honours supervisors, in the hope an updated version will be published in an academic journal.

Monash graduate Simon Ricketts, whose paper Do Political Actors Engage in Strategic Deception on Social Media? Is also on the portal, has a double degree in Commerce/Business Information Systems and completed Honours in Economics (Commerce) last year.

Now a policy adviser with the Federal Government’s Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Mr Ricketts says his paper’s presence on the portal brought many benefits.

“(It) provides an additional incentive for students to create higher-quality and more rigorous analysis, given it elevates high quality work in a public environment,” Mr Ricketts says.

He believes it will “absolutely” help his career development and prospects.

“Employers value critical analysis and communication skills. Being able to showcase high-quality work to potential employers alongside other Monash and Warwick students shows an understanding of economic principles and analysis.”

Board member and Director of Education at Monash Business School’s Department of Economics, Associate Professor Vinod Mishra says the portal gave students a “much-needed platform for communicating our non-PhD research to the academic community”.

A/Prof Mishra and Professor Sascha O. Becker, previously Deputy Head of Warwick’s Department of Economics and now the Xiaokai Yang Chair of Business and Economics at Monash Business School and part-time Professor at Warwick, helped facilitate collaborative work on the project.

“This initiative provides them with a platform to showcase their research projects and get recognition that extends beyond their academic transcripts,” A/Prof Mishra says.

“Students put a lot of effort into writing their research; however, most of the student research papers do not make it beyond their supervisors and academics involved in grading them.”

“We hope to reach out to potential employers and future students through this initiative and give them a glimpse of our programs' student research quality and rigour.”

There are plans to deepen the collaboration by organising joint conferences associated with the student paper series.