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What are Social Economics?

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  • Written By: D. Nelson
  • Edited By: M. C. Hughes
  • Last Modified Date: 27 August 2016
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Social economics, also known as socioeconomics, is the study of the effects that economics have on society. The discipline deals with the ethics, morality, behaviors, politics, and matters of religion and personal belief affect the economic health and economic decisions made by a particular society. It can also focus on how economics impacts the behaviors, ethics, morality and other aspects of a society. In short, professionals, scholars, and analysts in the field of social economics tend to be concerned with how changes in economy reflect and are caused by elements of human societies.

In order to better understand theories of social economics, it can be helpful to contrast them with those of conventional economics. Conventional economics is the study of goods and services, and tends to focus on factors such as production and consumption. Principles such as self-interest and rationality are considered major tenets of many conventional economic perspectives. Proponents of social economics, on the other hand, hold that behaviors, beliefs, and moralities of societies are often neglected in the study of conventional economics and focus on incorporating these factors into their analyses, policies, and overall philosophy.

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This study of socioeconomics is essential to a number of fields. For instance, social economics is often incorporated into political analysis. A professional in this field might predict how certain demographics will vote based on a number of economic indicators. Rates of employment and levels of wealth might be seen by a specialist in this field as critical to understanding the structures of political ideologies.

Businesses and organizations in the private sector may also benefit from consciousness of social economics. In these cases, professionals may look at various social markets to determine which income brackets prefer certain products and services. They may also study the amount of money that consumers in certain social contexts tend to spend and may look at various consumer trends related to these demographics.

Social economics are also used in broad academic fields such as sociology, anthropology, political science, and geography. In these cases, specialists tend to study how economics influence and are impacted by elements related to their fields of study. In geography, for example, an expert might consider the climate or geographic placement of a region and create theories to determine how their economy is impacted by these factors. Specialists, experts, and students who study or incorporate social economics into their work do so in a number of different ways and to different ends. Ultimately, however, they share the belief that economic factors are integral to understanding social behaviors.

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