Research is never easy, it becomes especially daunting if you don’t have a clue about the topic you want to write or research about. The topic you choose for your research can be as simple as writing an essay on law of diminishing marginal utility to as difficult the effect of monetary policies on the economic crisis in USA. The choice of your research topic depends on several factors. It is not only that you choose a topic out of curiosity or because of your interest. An intelligent selection of research topic shows that you know the labor and difficulties of research.
How to choose a research topic
There are several ways in which you can zero in and get ideas for your research topic e.g.
1. Your research topic can be assigned to you by your supervisor/instructor.
2. You can research on something that is directly associated with your career.
3. You might want to research on something interesting you read about or heard on television etc .
4. You might choose to investigate something interesting that was mentioned by the instructor during lessons.
Choosing the right topic for research is critical for the success of your research project thus you need to allot a few days to consider ideas, investigate availability of material and consult with instructors and librarians to get feedback about your topic.
What if you are a student of economics though? How would you go about selecting a topic for your research? There are several sources available such periodicals and journals, subject encyclopedias etc that would suggest interesting topics for you , however you first need to have a clear understanding of what economics and it’s branches are all about before deciding the specific topic for research.
WHAT IS ECONOMICS
Economics is a social science concerned with the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services. It studies how individuals, governments, businesses and nations make choices on allocating resources to satisfy their wants and needs and tries to determine how these groups should organize and coordinate their efforts to achieve maximum output.
Economics is subdivided into two branches
MICROECONOMICS focuses on how individuals, producers, and consumers make their decisions. This can include a single person, a household, a business or a governmental organization. MICROECONOMICS ranges from how these individuals trade with each other to how prices are affected by the supply and demand of goods. Also studies are the efficiency and cost associated with producing goods and services, how labor is allocated and divided, uncertainty, risk and strategic game theory.
MACROECONOMICS studies the overall economy. This can include a distinct geographical region, a country, a continent or even the whole world. Topic studies include government, fiscal, and monetary policy, unemployment rates, growth as shown by GDP and business cycles that result in expansion, booms, recessions and depressions.
Keeping in view the above definitions here is a list of topics that maybe of interest to you if you are a student/ researcher in either branch of economics. You may choose from these or find the lists helpful in generating your own research topic.
TOPICS FOR MICROECONOMICS
* Consumer behavior:
- What factors motivate people to shop online?
- What are the pros and cons of shopping online versus shopping from traditional brick and mortar store?
- Techniques to use to study the subconscious of a target customer.
* Supply, demand and equilibrium:
- How price influences supply and demand of a product in market?
- To study the trends in supply and demand of some famous carbonated drink over the past 10 years.
- To study the monopolistic techniques used by companies to increase the demand of products.
* Demand elasticities:
- To study the impact of price change on demand elasticity of that product.
- What are the trends in demand elasticity of gasoline as the price goes up and down over the past 5 years?
- To explore about five products that have most elastic demand pattern.
* Profit maximization:
- To study the negative strategies used by the cosmetic industry for the sake of profit maximization.
- What is the role of customer satisfaction in profit maximization?
- What are the most important factors to be considered by the kids clothing brands for profit maximization?
* Cost production : short run and long run
- To study the change in long run production cost of a product in comparison to the changes in labor wages.
- How the change in capital goods effect the long run production cost of a good or service?
- What are the variable cost of production for some famous brand of electronics?
* Imperfectly competitive product markets:
- How monopolistic competition influences production costs?
- To study the difference between perfectly competitive and imperfectly competitive markets.
- To explore how companies can benefit from imperfect competition?
* Labor markets:
- To study how ban on immigration can influence the labor market in USA?
- To study USA unemployment rate since 2016 to today.
- To explore the factors influencing labor productivity in information technology industry.
* Wage determination:
- Factors considered by the IT companies in determining wages of the employees.
- Role of government in regulating non-government companies to deliver optimum wages to employees.
- What is wage discrimination and what groups are most effected by it in the USA?
* Role of labor unions in labor markets:
- To study the positive role of unions in labor markets in uplifting issues concerning labor.
- To study the negative roles of unions in prolonging the production time of a product.
- What are the benefits of belonging to a union?
* Transaction cost economics
- How transaction costs introduce market imperfection in the pricing of a product?
- What options to consider when transportation costs are too high for the shipment of raw material?
TOPICS FOR MACROECONOMICS
* Macroeconomic models
- To study the historic correlation between inflation and unemployment.
- To explore the active agents in a specific economy.
- To study the correlation between active agents and constraints in an economy.
* Economic measurements and forecasting:
- To study the key indicators that could predict the future of automobile industry in Japan.
- To explore the impact of change in interest rates on the housing prices in USA over the next five years.
- To study the reasons behind the skepticism private sector have towards federal, and state economic forecasts.
* Fiscal policy
- What are the key factors that determine governmental spending policies?
- What is the role of fiscal policy in reaching a country’s economic goals?
- To study the impact of American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 on USA economy.
* Government budget, debt and deficits
- To study the impact of rising national debt on the life of average citizen.
- To study the relationship of rising debts and higher interest rates.
* Aggregate demand and aggregate supply
- To study the impact of industrial advancement on aggregate supply.
- What factors most commonly influence long-term aggregate supply?
- What is the relationship between technological advancement and aggregate demand and supply?
* Aggregate expenditures model and equilibrium output:
- To explore the relationship between income earned by middle class families and their spending pattern.
- What factors determine the spending pattern of families?
- Higher income means more spending, is it true?
* Monetary policy and inflation targeting:
- What is the impact of price stability on economic growth of a country?
- To study the benefits of inflation targeting.
* National and world wide economics:
- To study the factors that contribute to a country’s economic prosperity.
- To study the characteristics of world’s leading economies.
* Global conflicts and economy:
- To study the impacts of political conflicts on global GDP.
- To explore the impact of wars on global economy.
- What conflict resolutions did UN passed to combat humanitarian crisis around the world how and to what extent it helped the economy?
* Economic instability and macroeconomic policy:
- What are the major causes of economic instability in USA?
- What is the role of financial crisis on the economic instability in a country?
- To study the salient features of the 2007-2012 financial crisis of USA and its impact on economic instability.