Careers in Austrian Economics

P, who shall remain anonymous, wrote to my friend Tom Woods, asking him for advice on careers in Austrian economics. Although Tom has contributed more to this discipline than most Austrian economists, and, certainly, more than most economists in the entire field, he is not really an economist (his Ph.D. is in history, not economics), and does not know all that much about this issue, careers in Austrian economics. So, he asked me to respond to P. I am honored that Tom thought about me in this context, and was happy to respond to P’s query.

Here is a very small smattering of Tom’s contribution to the dismal science:

Woods, Thomas E. Jr. 2009. “Krugman Failure, Not Market Failure” June 19;

Woods, Thomas E. Jr. 2009A. Meltdown: A Free-Market Look at Why the Stock Market Collapsed, the Economy Tanked, and Government Bailouts Will Make Things Worse. Washington D.C.: Regnery Publishing

Woods, Thomas E. Jr. 2009B. “Response to the ‘Market Failure’ Drones” June 10; is the correspondence:

From: P

Date: Tue, Jan 29, 2019 at 10:46 AM

Subject: Careers in Austrian Economics

To: Tom Woods <>

Dear Tom,

I’ve been listening to your podcasts and reading your books for years and I have to say thank you!  I’ve learned so much about economics and it’s been so valuable to me. I’ve become so passionate, I’m considering going back to school to pursue an education in economics.  The only problem is: I don’t know what I would do with my degree!!  Can you point me towards any resources or people that could help me?  I love debating and researching, but so far, it seems like teaching econ is the only real path o ce you have the degree.

Thank you again,


From: Thomas Woods []

Sent: Tuesday, January 29, 2019 9:47 AM

To: Walter Block <>

Subject: Fwd: Careers in Austrian Economics

Walter, how would you advise this fellow?

From: Walter Block []

Sent: Tuesday, January 29, 2019 1:04 PM

To: Thomas Woods

Cc: P

Subject: RE: Careers in Austrian Economics

Dear P:

I, too, have learned lots from Tom, so I’m honored he asked me to respond.

There’s LOTS you can do with an undergrad degree in econ.

1.go to grad school and become an econ prof.

2.go to law school, which opens up a lot of avenues beside practicing law (econ majors do well in the LSATs)

3.go directly to a wall street job, or a job in a bank, insurance company, large corporation producing just about anything

4.given that you’re a libertarian, work for the LP (Mises caucus), or the libertarian caucus of the GOP for a libertarian think tank such as the Mises Institute, the Cato Institute, CEI, PERC; there are also some 50 libertarian think tanks, one in each of the 50 states; in Louisiana, it is the Pelican Institute. There must be another dozen or so libt think tanks in Wash DC and another two dozen spread around the country. There’s a few dozen in other countries (Fraser Institute in Canada), even one in Cuba, of all places

If you need more on this, please feel free to get back to me.

In case you do this, please consider coming to study with me:

Block, Walter E. 2017. “C’mon Down To New Orleans; The Water’s Fine. Enroll at Loyola University.” June 27;

C’mon Down To New Orleans; The Water’s Fine. Enroll at Loyola University

Loyola Economics Students Published Widely in Refereed Journals;

Block, Walter. 2017. “The Best Place to Study Undergraduate Economics.” June 30;

Wenzel, Robert. 2017. Interview with Walter E. Block. “The Inside Scoop on Studying Economics at Loyola University-New Orleans” September 3;

Block, Walter E. 2008. “Attention Students: Should You Get Your Ph.D. and Become a Professor?” June 28; (debate with Gary North);

Top Ten Contemporary Academics Helping The Political Right (#8) Literature map; some interesting writers

100 Most Influential Libertarians: A Newsmax/FreedomFest List (#46)

WEB Scholarship:

Block, Walter E. 2018. “Scholarship Opportunity: Spring 2019 New Business Students!” December 15;

Wenzel, Robert. 2018. “An Opportunity to Study Under a Libertarian Great.” December 11;

Wenzel, Robert. 2018. “Introducing the Walter E. Block Scholarship.” December 11;

Our economics department:

Walter E. Block is Harold E. Wirth Endowed Chair and Professor of Economics, College of Business, Loyola University New Orleans, and senior fellow at the Mises Institute. He earned his PhD in economics at Columbia University in 1972. He has taught at Rutgers, SUNY Stony Brook, Baruch CUNY, Holy Cross and the University of Central Arkansas. He is the author of more than 500 refereed articles in professional journals, two dozen books, and thousands of op eds. He lectures widely on college campuses, delivers seminars around the world and appears regularly on television and radio shows.  He is the Schlarbaum Laureate, Mises Institute, 2011; and has won the Loyola University Research Award (2005, 2008) and the Mises Institute’s Rothbard Medal of Freedom, 2005; and the Dux Academicus award, Loyola University, 2007.

Prof. Block counts among his friends Ron Paul and Murray Rothbard. He was converted to libertarianism by Ayn Rand. Block is old enough to have once met Ludwig von Mises, and shaken his hand. Block has never washed that hand since.  So, if you shake his hand (it’s pretty dirty, but what the heck) you channel Mises.

Block is a leading Austrian School economist and an international leader of the freedom movement. His earliest work Defending the Undefendable (first edition Fleet 1976, latest edition Mises 2008, translated in 12 languages) is now, more than 30 years later, still regarded as a classic of libertarianism. This collection of essays, which argues in behalf of societal villains as economic scapegoats based on the principles of nonaggression, forces its reader to think and to rethink his initial knee-jerk emotional responses, and to gain a new and far sounder appreciation of economic theory and of the virtues and operations of the free market economy. Block’s writing was inspired by Henry Hazlitt, the author of the most widely read economics text Economics in One Lesson. Block’s latest book is: Yes to Ron Paul and Liberty.

Block has been a fixture in the libertarian movement for some four Decades. He actually met Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek, and was friends with, and mentored by, Murray Rothbard.  His contributions to academic libertarianism and to Austrian economics have been prodigious. Block’s writings continue to challenge the conventional wisdom (or ignorance) of how economics works and will retain its freshness for decades to come.  His public speaking style has been described as a combination of that of Woody Allen, Lenny Bruce and Murray Rothbard

Dr. Block has written over 500 articles for peer reviewed refereed journals, some two dozen books, and literally thousands of op eds for magazines and newspapers. Block appears widely on radio and television. He is a contributor to such scholarly journals as The Review of Austrian Economics, Journal of Libertarian Studies, The Journal of Labor Economics, and the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics. He is currently Harold E. Wirth Eminent Scholar Endowed Chair and Professor of Economics, College of Business Administration, at Loyola University New Orleans.

Top Ten Contemporary Academics Helping The Political Right (#8) Literature map; some interesting writers

100 Most Influential Libertarians: A Newsmax/FreedomFest List (#46)


Best regards,



4:55 pm on May 13, 2019