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AIER Hosts Columbia’s Knight-Bagehot Fellows

The Knight-Bagehot Fellows of the Columbia University’s School of Journalism visited AIER’s campus in Great Barrington, Mass., earlier this month to participate in a two-day series of seminars, discussions, and social events.

The all-expenses paid, highly selective Knight-Bagehot Fellowship brings 10 mid-career journalists to the Columbia campus in New York City to spend an academic year studying business, economics, and finance. During the program, fellows also meet with corporate executives, economists and academics, and receive briefings at major media companies and financial institutions.

Since 2009, AIER has been a final stop in the program’s course of study. “AIER and the Knight-Bagehot program share fundamental values,” says Marcia Stamell, AIER book editor and the institute’s coordinator for the program. “Both groups care deeply about getting better economic and financial information to ordinary people. “

While on campus, the journalists heard from AIER Research Fellow Jia Liu about the relationship between the financial markets and the economy. They also listened to Senior Research Fellow Polina Vlasenko’s analysis of the federal budget and her lecture about various measures of inflation, including AIER’s proprietary Everyday Price Index.

Senior Research Fellow Natalia Smirnova rounded out the program with two sessions on how to work with data: “A Walk with FRED” guided the journalists through Federal Reserve economic data. Her session on the federal budget complemented Vlasenko’s lecture with hands-on reviews of the websites for the Congressional Budget Office and the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, as well as more work with FRED.

“The visit involves two-way learning,” Stamell says. “AIER’s staff economists present programs based on their recent research and their general expertise. In return, the Bagehots invariably give us deeper understandings of craft and the kinds of issues journalists—and their readers—currently care about.”

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