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Indiana University Bloomington
Department of Economics

W. Phillip Saunders

W. Phillip Saunders

Professor Emeritus
Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1964

Economics Education

Professor Saunders held teaching positions at M.I.T., Bowdoin College, and Carnegie-Mellon University before becoming a Professor of Economics at Indiana University in 1970. In addition to his teaching and research at IU, Professor Saunders served as the Director of the Center for Economic Education for 28 years and as the faculty coordinator for the large-enrollment, multi-section courses Introduction to Microeconomics and Introduction to Macroeconomics. He also served as an Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences from 1974-78 and as Chair of the Department of Economics from 1988-92. Professionally, he served two four year terms on the American Economic Association’s Committee on Economic Education, and he served as first vice president of the Midwest Economics Association and as President of the Society of Economic Educators.

Professor Saunders received two distinguished teaching awards at Indiana University: the Senior Class Council Award in 1974 and the Amoco Foundation Award in 1981. His profile in the millennium edition of the Marquis Who’s Who in America also lists four awards from national organizations: the Villard Award for Distinguished Research from The National Association of Economic Educators; the George Washington Honor Medal and a Leavy Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge; and the Distinguished Service Award from the National Council on Economic Education. In addition to extensive consulting and speaking throughout the United States, Phil conducted workshops in economics education for college professors and high school teachers in Azerbaijan, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and before his retirement in 1998.

Since retiring, Phil has spent more time enjoying his family (five children and 10 grandchildren), playing golf, and volunteering at the Shalom Community Center – a daytime resource center for the homeless and very poor in the Bloomington community. In April 2012 he was presented with a Be More Award by the Bloomington Volunteer Network “For his passion and commitment to people in poverty”, and his most recent publication is the lead chapter “A History of Economic Education” in in Gail M. Hoyt and KimMarie McGoldrick (eds.), 2012, International Handbook on Teaching and Learning Economics (Cheltenham, UK and Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar), pp. 1-62.