What Are the Various Subfields of Economics?

Question: What Are the Various Subfields of Economics?

Answer: At the most basic level, the field of economics is divided into microeconomics, or the study of individual markets, and macroeconomics, or the study of the economy as a whole.  At a more granular level, however, economics has many subfields, depending on how finely you wish to divided the science. A useful classification system is provided by The Journal of Economic Literature.

Here are some of the subfields that the JEL identifies:

 

  • Mathematical and Quantitative Methods

     

  • Econometrics

     

  • Game Theory and Bargaining Theory

     

  • Experimental Economics

     

  • Microeconomics

     

  • Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics

     

  • The Business Cycle

     

  • Money and Interest Rates

     

  • International Economics and International Trade

     

  • Finance and Financial Economics

     

  • Public Economics, Taxation, and Government Spending

     

  • Health, Education, and Welfare

     

  • Labor and Demographic Economics

     

  • Law and Economics

     

  • Industrial Organization

     

  • Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting

     

  • Economic History

     

  • Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth

     

  • Economic Systems

     

  • Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics

     

  • Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics

In addition, there are a number of fields within economics that didn't significantly exist when the JEL classification was developed, such as behavioral economics, organizational economics, market design, social choice theory, and a number of others.

 

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Moffatt, Mike. "What Are the Various Subfields of Economics?" ThoughtCo, Jul. 1, 2016, thoughtco.com/subfields-of-economics-1146356. Moffatt, Mike. (2016, July 1). What Are the Various Subfields of Economics? Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/subfields-of-economics-1146356 Moffatt, Mike. "What Are the Various Subfields of Economics?" ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/subfields-of-economics-1146356 (accessed May 21, 2018).