Brazil’s Labour Laws Reformed.

IB Business & IB Economics. For the first time since 1945, as from today, November the 11th, 2017, new labour laws come into force in Brazil. The new laws have been welcomed by the business community, who feel that the laws bring Brazil’s labour market into the 21st century, but many, including  the Trade Unions and the poor, have protested against the changes. In economic language these types of changes are often referred to as ‘ making the labour market more flexible’. In economics it is an example of a ‘ market based supply side policy’ the aim of which … Continue reading Brazil’s Labour Laws Reformed.

Executive Pay and Donald Trump.

IB BUSINESS & MANAGEMENT AND IB ECONOMICS. From ‘Brexit’, to the election of Donald Trump as US president, a number of recent world events have surprised and shocked many people. Can we link anything on the IB Economics and IB Business & Management syllabuses to these profound changes in politics, society and economics? Can business and economics explain anything about these happenings? Of course it can! Let’s look first at executive pay (Section 2.4 of the Business syllabus, salaries and remuneration) . As Ha-Joon Chang points out in his masterly book “23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism“, the salaries … Continue reading Executive Pay and Donald Trump.

There Is No Such Thing as A ‘Free Market’.

I.B. Economics. Anyone studying economics, no matter how briefly, will soon come across the phrase, the ‘ free market’. We also talk about ‘ free marketeers’, who are economists who believe that the less the government ‘ interferes’  in markets the better. They tend to argue that when the government steps into markets and introduces, for example, a minimum wage or a price ceiling, then this results in a restriction on the ‘freedom of choice’ of the players in the market, and also causes a loss of efficiency in the market. One of the main themes of the IB Economics  … Continue reading There Is No Such Thing as A ‘Free Market’.

Development Economics – South Africa Verses Brazil

IB Economics. The Similarities and Differences Between South Africa and Brazil. (Syllabus Section 4.1 – Similarities and Differences Between Developing Countries). I am spending the holiday in South Africa at the moment so thought that I would do a post on South Africa and Brazil. When I started studying economics all those years ago we used the terms ‘ the First World’, the ‘ Second World’ and the ‘ Third World’ – meaning the rich countries, the Soviet Bloc countries and the poor countries of the world. However, the phrase ‘ Third World’ implies that all the poor countries are … Continue reading Development Economics – South Africa Verses Brazil

Step Eight – Coursework Assessment Criteria

IB Economics. These are the assessment rubrics for the economics coursework. If you have any doubts, refer to the syllabus. Coursework Assessment Criteria. Criteria Description Marks A Diagrams See Step Four 3 B Terminology Have you used the language and terminology of the subject throughout your commentary? Have you defined 3 or 4 specialist economics terms? 2 C Application See Step Four & Step Five 2 D Analysis See Step Five 3 E Evaluation See Step Five 4 F Rubric Requirements* Does each commentary does not exceed 750 words? Is each article is based on a different section of the … Continue reading Step Eight – Coursework Assessment Criteria

Step Five – Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation

IB Economics. If you want top grades in your coursework, you need to be able to prove skills of analysis, synthesis and evaluation. Commentaries that just describe or restate the information in the article, tend to get low marks. These skills are difficult to do and take time and practice to acquire. What is analysis? When you analyze something, you look at it in a lot of detail, you break it down into it’s component parts and try and make links or connections between the different parts. What is synthesis? A summary of the available information that you have – … Continue reading Step Five – Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation

Step Four – Including Diagrams.

IB Economics. Diagrams are essential to economics. When you draw a diagram to explain or illustrate an economics situation, you are demonstrating your ‘ application’ skills – applying the theory we learn in class to explain or illustrate an economic situation. If you want top marks for your coursework, your diagram have to be excellent. The following are a list of rules to follow:- 1)  Diagrams should be large –  around one-third of a page in size. 2)     Always label the axes appropriately – eg  “Price of Cars” , not just “Price”  and “Quantity of Oil (Barrels per Year) ” … Continue reading Step Four – Including Diagrams.

Step Three – Writing Up Your Commentary

IB Economics. The maximum word count for each commentary is 800 words. It is vitally important to write as close as possible up to this limit i.e. 799 words! In order to maximize your marks, you will have to do a lot of things – write an introduction and conclusion, draw one or two diagrams, explain and describe each one, define some economic terms and concepts that you are using, directly refer to the article etc. All of this takes up a lot of your word count! For this reason, make sure you use as much of your word count … Continue reading Step Three – Writing Up Your Commentary

Step Two – Using Good Article Sources

IB Economics. Your article sources must be news media sources, containing the latest news about an economics issue. Remember: you cannot use the same source for more than one commentary. Each source should be different for each commentary. I tell my students to use these sources, amongst others:- http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/    https://edition.cnn.com/business   https://www.bbc.com/news/business   http://www.independent.co.uk    http://www.guardian.co.uk   http://www.nytimes.com/pages/world/index.html   https://www.reuters.com/       Notice something. The Economist magazine and the Financial Times are not on the above list. It is not recommended that you choose articles from these publications because they already analyse and evaluate the economic situation that they … Continue reading Step Two – Using Good Article Sources