Foundation for European Economic Development

Mark Blaug Student Essay Prize



In honour of the great critical economist Mark Blaug (1927-2011),

FEED is financing and awarding an annual student essay prize.


Details of the 2018 Prize Competition

Eligible essays for the prize must be critical discussions of any aspect of modern economics.


Rather than applying economics to a particular problem, eligible essays must reflect critically on the state of economics itself, as Mark Blaug did in many of his works. Critical reflections may include the assumptions adopted, the suitability of the concepts deployed, the mode of analysis, the role of mathematical models, the use of econometrics, real-world relevance, the presumed relationship between theory and policy, the unwarranted influence of ideology, the use (or otherwise) of insights from other disciplines, and so on.


The required language is English. Eligible essays are by university undergraduates, or by graduates who obtained their Bachelor’s degree no earlier than 1 January 2017. There is no residential or geographical restriction.


Undergraduate dissertations must be converted to essay format and reduced to 6,000 words (inclusive of references and appendices) or less. Author names, affiliations and email must be placed on the first page, below the title of the essay.


Up to two prizes will be awarded each year, depending on the quality of the best papers. The respective awards will be £500 and £300. FEED will reserve the right to award no prize, or one prize only, if there are inadequate essays of quality. The prizes will be judged by a committee of leading scholars.


Essays should be submitted by email to and George Liagouras

by 1 October 2018. The awards will be made in late 2018 or early 2019. Download the announcement flyer HERE.


The Winners of the Fourth Mark Blaug Student Essay Prize

The 2017 entries were judged by Sheila Dow and Robert Skidelsky. The following two prizes are awarded for the two (downloadable) essays:

- First Prize (£500), Marco David Schmandt (University of Bonn, Germany) for his essay: "Economic Rationality and Human Behaviour: Can False Assumptions become Reality?"


- Second Prize (£300), Marla Dina Hinkenhuis (University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany) for her essay "Comparing Strategic Trade Theory and Neoclassical Trade Theory: How the World View of Theories is bound to its Assumptions”


The Winners of the Third Mark Blaug Student Essay Prize

The 2016 entries were judged by Ha-Joon Chang, Sheila Dow and Robert Skidelsky. The following two prizes are awarded for the two (downloadable) essays:


- First Prize (£500), Timon L. Dreyer (2015 graduate of University of Bonn) for his essay “Inherent World Views: Narrative-Induced Research in Economics”


- Second Prize (£300), Natasha Tiwana (2016 graduate of King’s College London) for her essay “Assessment of a strict microfoundations approach to macroeconomics – highlighting the consequences of using the ‘representative agent’ to construct macroeconomic models”

The Winners of the Second Mark Blaug Student Essay Prize

The 2015 entries were judged by Robert Skidelsky. The following two prizes are awarded for the two (downloadable) essays:


- First Prize (£500), Milan Quentel (Witten-Herdecke University, Germany) "The history of economic thought and its role for rethinking economics"


- Second Prize (£300), Florian Rommel (Cusanus Hochschule, Germany) "Performing pluralism in economics: A discourse in need of the performative turn?"


The Winners of the First Mark Blaug Student Essay Prize

The 2014 entries were judged by Robert Skidelsky and Ha-Joon Chang. It was decided to award the prizes jointly (£400 each) to the following two students for their essays:


- Heidi Leonhardt (Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria) “Efficiency reconsidered: A social ecological economics approach”


- Benjamin Wolcott (Swarthmore College, USA) “Does taking Econ 101 cause overconfidence?”


The Mark Blaug Student Essay Prize is promoted in collaboration with Rethinking Economics

FEED also welcomes the "Mark Blaug Prize in Philosophy and Economics" for graduate students and recent PhDs, organized since 2011 by the Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics, based in Rotterdam in the Netherlands. Both prize competitions have been approved by Mark Blaug's widow.