Harvard International Economics Essay Contest (HIEEC)


Preparation Length

Submission Deadline

Competition Details

  • Introduction: The Harvard Undergraduate Economics Association (HUEA) is organizing its flagship Harvard International Economics Essay Contest with the collaboration of the Harvard College Economics Review. We jointly organize the Essay competition with HUEA, and we also publish the top three essays in our online publications. HIEEC provides students the opportunity to demonstrate an accomplished level of writing and understanding of economic theory. Through the contest, students hone their academic and professional skills and exhibit their knowledge.
  • 2021 Harvard International Economics Essay Contest Topic:
  1. The current national debt of the United States stands at roughly $29 trillion, a value greater than the GDP. Some argue that this mountain of debt constitutes an economic threat. Others reassure the public that debt is no cause for concern. Is the national debt a matter for concern, and why or why not?
  2. As governments around the world struggled to control the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, international trade took a massive blow as it experienced unprecedented production chain disruptions. How did such disruptions affect varying economic agents – from individuals to entire nations? What can be done to temper current shocks and prevent future ones?
  3. The Sherman Act of 1890 outlaws “every contract, combination, or conspiracy in restraint of trade,” and any “monopolization, attempted monopolization, or conspiracy or combination to monopolize.” Over a century after it was adopted, the Sherman Act still actively informs United States antitrust policy. However, many lawmakers are now considering redefining these policies. Is antitrust regulation outdated and in need of modernization? What new policies, if any, should legislators propose? How will these changes affect markets?
  4. The rise of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), in addition to existing forms of decentralized cryptocurrencies, could eventually shape the way global finance is conducted through technology. This spells significant economic and political repercussions, especially as non-US countries such as China implement CBDCs to varying extents. In light of these developments, how should the Federal Reserve, European Central Bank, or other institutions and governments proceed with the development of CBDCs in their respective economies?
  • Contest Rule: The word limit of 1500 must be strictly adhered to. Any words past the limit will be truncated. This limit excludes references, footnotes, titles, headers and footers.
  • Competition Website: For more information about the competition, click here.
  • How to Write Any High School Essay

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