How an Economics Professor Writes

Quick Facts

Pen or pencil?

Apple pencil

Favorite punctuation mark?

Oxford comma

Favorite phrase?

Policy implication


Laura Crispin, Ph.D.
Associate Professor


SJU Writes: What role does writing play in your life?

LC: Formally, it’s very much through the classes that I teach and the research that I publish. I do teach at least two different writing intensive classes. Research Methods is the one that I teach most frequently, but I used to teach labor economics. Teaching students how to write for economic discipline is very different than any of the writing that they have ever done. Professionally, I am working on at least three different research projects right now and all of them are in the drafting process.

SJU Writes: Is there something you’re working on now that you’re really excited about?

LC: I am working on a project about art museums, where I am studying who is attending museums and how frequently, with a focus on K-12 students.  Another project I am working on is about high school sports. I am looking at whether or not sports can reduce the chance of being bullied, and I have a couple projects related to that.

SJU Writes: What advice do you have for students learning to write as an economist?

LC: Mostly, get to the point. Tell us something important and what you’re contributing to that greater literature. I also think students have a really hard time talking about empirical findings. A lot of students are really great at getting results and doing the analysis, but when it comes to actually writing about their analysis, there is a disconnect. It’s challenging, but the more students do it, the better they’ll get at it.

—Cara Smith ’21