The Economics of The Office

Learning economics from the world's best boss

Performance Review

In this clip (found only on the deleted scenes sadly), Dwight attempts to justify the raise he feels he deserves. Dwight correctly identifies the relationship between inflation and his real wage. If Dwight’s nominal wages do not increase at least at the rate of inflation the real purchasing power of his wages will fall!

Season 2 Episode 8 "Performance Review"

Compensation Packages (J33) Inflation (E31)

Ryan Dwight Jim

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Conflict Resolution Part 1

In this clip, Michael attempts to resolve a conflict between Oscar and Angela. One application of this clip is to reiterate the idea that voluntary trade results in a "win win" situation. This clip also can be used when showing outcomes on an aggregate supply/aggregate demand framework. When we have a major increase in aggregate supply (something like the IT revolution in the 1990's) it results in lower levels of inflation and unemployment or a "win win" outcome. (maybe even win, win, win!)

Season 2 Episode 21 "Conflict Resolution"

Inflation (E31) Unemployment (J60) Trade (F10) Macroeconomic Models (E10)

Michael Pam Oscar Angela Toby

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Conflict Resolution Part 2

Similar to the applications in Part 1, the "win lose" outcome in this clip can be used to talk about the expected trade off between inflation and unemployment when many polices are implemented.

Season 2 Episode 21 "Conflict Resolution"

Inflation (E31) Unemployment (J60) Macroeconomic Policy (E60)

Michael Toby

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Pyramid Scheme

Michael tries to convince the office to sell calling cards until he realizes it is a pyramid scheme. Occasionally, students will be offered "internships" that are thinly disguised ponzi schemes. This clip can be used as a lead in to talk about "mufti level marketing schemes" where the product being offered is not very valuable.

Season 2 Episode 19 "Michael's Birthday" Caution!

Consumer Protection (D18) Corporate Finance and Governance (G30)

Michael Ryan Jim Oscar Toby

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Nepotism

Michael hires his nephew, Luke, to work at the office and is forced to defend his decision to the rest of the employees.

Season 2 Episode 19 "Nepotism" Caution!

Labor Demand (J23) Labor Discrimination (J71)

Michael Creed Dwight Jim Oscar Toby Erin

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