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Istituto Bruno Leoni asks for the Templeton Foundation’s support to release and distribute a series of five comic book stories and video-animations aimed at high-school students.The Institute wishes to provide students with a clear and accessible explanation of the concept of “unintended consequences.”
IBL already has a program of economic education for high schoolers, currently articulated into two lectures are broadly inspired to two remarkable economic parables: Leonard Read’s explanation of voluntary cooperation through the tale of a pencil, and Frédéric Bastiat’s masterpiece in economic logic “What Is Seen, and What Is Unseen.” IBL ha produced an illustrated leaflet of “I, pencil” which has so far been distributed in over 3,800 copies, authored by cartoonist Giorgio Vallorani.
Easier-to-digest and more appealing material is, however, needed in dealing with an audience of teenagers.
Using a simple vocabulary and attractive graphics, these comic book stories will help students to realize that, paraphrasing Frédéric Bastiat, while considering public policy options “both the effect that can be seen and those effects that must be foreseen” shall be taken into account. This apparently rather simple understanding is at odd with deep rooted biases, but it is often not balanced by a more careful teaching of how social realities come by (for example, the teachings of history tend to insist, by and large, on individual biographies and stories, involuntarily contributing to a simple reading of social causality).
The comic book stories will be prepared by a well established graphic artist, Giorgio Vallorani – with whom IBL has already co-operated in the past – with the support by Istituto Bruno Leoni’s Director General.
The comic book stories will be distributed free of charge to selected high schools in Italy – aiming at an initial run-up of 8,000 copies.
The comic book stories will also be adapted and animated for Internet videos – both in Italian and English.