Economics is the science of decision making—understanding the costs and benefits of decisions made by individuals, communities, organisations and governments all of which affect our lives daily.
Economists analyse how and why decisions are made, from individuals’ consumption and firms’ production, to determining prices. Methods include designing abstract models of how agents make decisions and testing these models using real-world data.
Topics studied in economics include:
  • Determination of the prices and quantities of goods.
  • Consumer and organisation behaviour.
  • International trade.
  • Income distribution.
  • Taxes, subsidies and tariff.
  • Determination of the aggregate level of economic activity.
  • Climate change, resource allocation and management.
  • Health and transport.
  • Agricultural production.
  • Unemployment.
  • Inflation and economic growth.


  • Provide advice and forecasts
  • Evaluate investment proposals, policy, interest rates, exchange rates, and share prices.
  • Analyse markets.
  • Investigate national or international economic conditions or specific industries, markets or regions.

The difference between commerce and business

Commerce, business and economics are complementary fields. However, Commerce and Business are vocationally based.
Commerce focuses on accounting and finance. Business develops managerial skills, addressing key areas such as marketing, business development, human resource management and international business.
Economics develops lifelong analytical skills with which graduates can build a strong basis for long-term career success.