Economics is a subject that studies the way societies and individuals organize activities such as production. The subject also covers the allocation of scarce resources to meet the needs and wants of a population. Economists essentially focus on the production and distribution of services and goods. The ideas of utility, scarcity, producers and consumers are three important aspects of economics. Many establishments across the nation offer programs in fields related to economics.

Utility

The idea of utility has to do with wants that satisfy power. Anything that people want or need possesses some level of utility. An item or service highly desired by many is said to possess high utility. Utilities are classified in relation to place, form and time. Ice offers greater value during warmer parts of the year, such as summer. A cold storage house can increase ice's time utility. Cold storage houses prevent ice from melting, increasing its time utility. Wood offers more utility in terms of form after it has been fabricated into furniture than in its raw state.

Scarcity

Scarcity is another important aspect of economics. Goods and services possess value when they combine utility with scarcity. Economists study how scarce resources are used to fulfill people's wants and needs. Productive resources are scarce; producing goods that people want cannot be done for free. Resources must be economized and used as efficiently as possible, targeting the largest number of wants or needs. Most of the world's largest economic problems deal with the issue of scarcity. Scarcity essentially guarantees competition for resources and services. Markets and politics provide the means to organize and channel competition.

Producers and Consumers

Economics also studies the importance of the producer and the consumer in society. Most people play the roles of both producer and consumer in their daily lives. By going to work and producing an income, individuals play the role of producers in society. By purchasing goods and services, people play the role of the consumer. Producers create or otherwise bring about utility.

Noteworthy Economics Institutions

Many universities and other institutions across America offer extensive programs in the fields of economics. Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey and the University of Chicago in Illinois are just three establishments that are known for their demanding and competitive economics programs. Students of these universities can enroll in graduate-level economics programs that lead to a master's degree in economics.