Faculty Advisors
 Advisor Portal
 ASSA Paper Session
Link Outstanding Service Award
Link Recognizing our Advisors
National Office
 Contact Us
 About Us
The American Economist

Handbook for Chapter Advisors

Omicron Delta Epsilon is the International Economics Honor Society.  The following are the most important objectives of Omicron Delta Epsilon: first and foremost is to recognize scholastic attainment in economics; second is to recognize outstanding achievements in economics on the part of economists at all levels; third is to establish closer ties between students and faculty in economics within their own colleges and universities; fourth is to establish closer ties between students and faculty in economics on all campuses; fifth is to publish an official journal; and sixth is to emphasize the professional aspects of economics as a career field  for service in the academic world, business, government, and international organizations.

Table of Contents

The Philosophy of Omicron Delta Epsilon
The History of Omicron Delta Epsilon
Organizational Structure
Eligibility for Membership
Fees and Dues
The Biennial Convention
The American Economist
Graduate Student Paper Sessions
  • ODE Distinguished Economist Award
  • ODE Graduate Research Award
  • ODE Undergraduate Research Award

  • Outstanding Student Leadership Award


Chapter Organization
Chapter Activities
Chapter Advisors
Central Office

Directions for Submitting Applications

Advantages of Having an Omicron Delta Epsilon Chapter
  Advantages for Students
  Advantages for Faculty and the Department

Suggested Chapter Activities
Suggestions for Annual Programs and Related Topics

The Philosophy of Omicron Delta Epsilon

Omicron Delta Epsilon is dedicated to the encouragement of excellence in economics.  It encourages devotion on the part of its members as economists to the advancement of their science and to the scholarly effort to make freedom from want and deprivation a reality for all mankind.

The History of Omicron Delta Epsilon

Omicron Delta Epsilon, one of the largest academic honor societies, was established in 1963 as a result of a merger of two honor societies: Omicron Delta Gamma at the University of Wisconsin and the society at Harvard university; and Omicron Chi Epsilon  which was founded in 1956 by Prof. Alan A. Brown when he was a student at the City College of New York).  It became an International Honor Society in Economics in 1969.  Since that time, a number of chapters throughout the world has been added. Also see...

Organizational Structure

Omicron Delta Epsilon is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies in the United States, and thus fully recognized and accredited.

It is governed by an International Executive Board Consisting of the International President, the president-elect, two or more vice-presidents, the Executive Secretary-Treasurer, the Editor-in Chief of The American Economist, the Editor of the Awards Competitions, the Chair of the International Board of Trustees, and the Chair and Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees.  The International Board of Trustees consists of outstanding economists both in the United States and in other countries that are elected at the ODE Biennial Convention.

The International Executive Board is the operative governing body of the society.  It meets at least once a year to set policy, approve new chapters (which may be approved by mail ballot in the interim), recommend requested changes in the constitution, and take action on appropriate matters and issues in accordance with the provisions of the constitution.

Eligibility for Membership

Undergraduate candidates for election to membership in any chapter of Omicron Delta Epsilon must be making the study of economics one of their major interests and must be attending an institution where a chapter is located.  Candidates must have an overall grade point average of at least 3.0, and at least twelve credits (semester hours) in economics with an average of  at least a 3.0 GPA or better.  In the case of colleges or universities with an Honors Program in Economics, candidates in the Honors program must have the equivalent of B grade work or better.

For universities organized on the British System, all Junior standing or higher.

For institutions that do not have a credit hour system, a candidate must stand in the upper one-third of the students studying economics and must have completed principles and have studied intermediate economic theory.

Graduate students are judged solely on their graduate work.  Graduate membership shall consist of graduate students in good standing who are attending an institution where a chapter is located or who become members while undergraduates/ They must be in residence at least one semester, with a major or minor in economics and have a GPA of 3.0 or better. 

There are no admission requirements for faculty members.  All are eligible and welcome to join as charter members or they may be elected later by the chapter.
Chapters may also elect Honorary Members and Alumni Members (persons who graduated before the local chapter was organized).  Candidates for membership must be persons of high ethical and professional standards. Honorary membership must be bestowed by a two-thirds vote of a chapter's membership. The names and accomplishments of honorary members should be reported to the International Executive Board within six months of election.
No one shall be denied membership because of sex, race, color, creed, or national origin. 

Also see...

Membership Fee

Each prospective member of Omicron Delta Epsilon upon his/her election pays an international initiation fee, currently $40.00, to membership in the Honor Society.  In return, he/she receives a membership scroll, card, and free on-line access to The American Economist.  The purchase of the official key or pin by the initiates is optional but encouraged.  There are no annual international dues.

Biennial Convention

Once every two years, in conjunction with the meetings of the Allied Social Sciences Associations (ASSA), the Society convenes at the meeting place where the ASSA is holding its meetings.  At these conventions, the ODE Distinguished Economist Award recipient delivers a paper, which is then followed by the biennial business meeting of the Society.  Delegates of the chapters to the biennial convention constitute the highest governing and legislative body of the society.  At the conventions, the President-elect becomes the International President and the authorized delegates elect the President-elect, Vice Presidents, Executive Secretary-Treasurer, Editor-in-Chief, and members of the Board of Trustees by majority vote.

The American Economist

The American Economist is the journal of the Omicron Delta Epsilon, which is published biannually, April and November.  Its purposes are twofold: first, to provide an outlet for essays and papers written by graduate and undergraduate students of a nature not normally solicited by existing professional journals but of sufficient interest and merit to warrant publication; and second, to provide a means of acquainting economists and undergraduates contemplating a career in economics with current developments in pure and applied economics.  The American Economist periodically publishes a set of course reading lists for major universities, covering different fields of economics and abstracts of doctoral dissertations in the same field, in addition to articles and other features of interest.
The Editors of The American Economist are assisted in their work by a prominent Editorial Board.

Graduate Student Paper Sessions

Each year, Omicron Delta epsilon sponsors a Graduate Economics Session consisting of graduate students' papers selected on a competitive basis.  The papers are presented at the annual meeting of the American Economics Association (part of Allied Social Sciences meetings).

Similarly, Regional Graduate Student Paper Sessions are sponsored by the ODE Regional Representatives at the meetings of various regional economics associations.


To implement its objectives, Omicron Delta Epsilon sponsors the ODE Distinguished Economist Award and two international competitive awards, the ODE Graduate Research Award and the ODE Undergraduate Research Award for ODE members, graduate and undergraduate students, respectively.

The ODE Distinguished Economist Award, established in memory of one of the founders of Omicron Delta Epsilon, is awarded biennially to an outstanding economist in recognition of his achievements and for his service both to the economics profession and to Omicron Delta Epsilon.  Previous recipients of this award have been: Professor Evsey D. Domar of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1965; Professor Arthur Smithies of Harvard University, 1967; Professor Gerhard Tintner of the University of Southern California, 1969; Professor Milton Friedman of the University of Chicago, 1971, Professor Kenneth J. Arrow of Harvard University, 1973; Professor Robert Solow of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1975; Professor William S. Baumol of Princeton and New York Universities, 1977; Professor Abram Bergson of Harvard University, 1979; Professor Arnold Zellner of the University of Chicago, 1981; Professor Dale Jorgenson of Harvard University, 1983; Professor Kenneth E. Boulding of the University of Colorado, 1985; Professor Gary Becker of the University of Chicago, 1987; Professor Martin Feldstein of the National Bureau of Economics Research, 1989;Professor Douglass C. North of Washington University, 1991;Professor Robert Eisner of Northwestern University, 1993; Professor Jagdish Bhagwati of Columbia University, 1995; Professor Walter Adams of Trinity University (Texas) and Michigan State University, 1997; Professor Paul A. Samuelson of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1999; Professor Victor R. Fuchs of Stanford, University, 2001; Professor Irma Adleman of University of California, Berkeley, 2003; Professor Benjamin Friedman of Harvard University, 2005; Professor Rachel McCulloch of Brandeis University, 2007; Professor Claudia Goldin of Harvard University, 2009; Professor Peter Diamond of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2011; Michael Szenberg of Pace University , 2012; Daniel Hamermesh of the University of Texas-Austin, 2013, Paul Romer of New York University in 2015, David Colander of Middlebury College in 2017, Greg Mankiw of Harvard University in 2019; and Christina Romer of University of California-Berkeley in 2022.  

The ODE Graduate Research Award is bestowed upon the best paper presented by a graduate student at the ODE Graduate Student Session during the annual ASSA meetings.

Who is Eligible - Members of Omicron Delta Epsilon who are chosen to present papers at the ODE Graduate Student Session.

Eligible Entries - Articles may be on any topic in economics.  They must be based on work initiated prior to receipt of Ph.D. Entries of up to 5,000 words are preferred, but up to 10,000 words are acceptable.

Nature of Award - The ODE Graduate Research Award consists of a cash prize of $2,000 to the winner, and submission of the paper for consideration to The American Economist.

Procedure for Participation -Submit your abstract through the ODE website at http://www.omicrondeltaepsilon.org/forms/assa-application-graduate.html  If you are chosen to present at the Graduate Session, your paper will be eligible for the competition. All abstracts must be received by Omicron Delta Epsilon by May 15 of each year. Full copies of papers accepted for presentation must be received by the editor for competitions by Nov. 1 to be considered. The full copies should be sent to Dr. JJ Arias, Vice President for Competitions: Georgia College and State University; Dept. of Economics; 231 West Hancock Street; Milledgeville, GA 31061. Email: [email protected]. Email submissions preferred

Selection Process - The Selection Committee determines the annual winner of the ODE Graduate Research Award.  The Committee is selected by the ODE Vice-President of Competitions each year.

Award Announcement - The recipient of the award is determined by December 15 of each year and is announced at the annual ASSA meetings in January and published on the ODE website. The Award is presented at the ODE Advisor Reception during the ASSA meetings.

For more information, write the Vice President for Competitions, PO Box 2096; Fairhope, AL 36532.

The ODE Undergraduate Research Award is a competitive award bestowed upon the undergraduate or recent graduate in economics submitting the best article in any year.  (Economics refers to both theoretical and applied economics, and student's writing papers in agricultural economics or other areas of applied economics are eligible for the award as long as there is an Omicron Delta Epsilon chapter on their campus and they are members thereof).

Who is Eligible - Members of Omicron Delta Epsilon who are undergraduate students and have received their bachelor's degree within the past year.

Eligible Entries - Articles may be on any topic in economics.  They must be based on work done as an undergraduate.  Entries of up to 5,000 words are preferred, but up to 10,000 words are acceptable.

Nature of Award - The ODE Undergraduate Research Award consists of a cash prize of $1,000 to the winner, $200 to the winner's chapter, and submission of the paper in The American Economist at the author's option.
Procedure for Participation - Submit one copy of your entry with a supporting letter from a faculty member to the Chairman of the Award Competitions.  All entries must be received by Omicron Delta Epsilon by August 1 of each year.

Selection Process - The Selection Committee determines the annual winner of the ODE Graduate Research Award.  The Committee is selected by the Vice-President of Competitions each year.

Award Announcement - The recipient of the award is determined by December 15 of each year and is announced at the annual ASSA meetings in January and published on the ODE website.

For more information, write the Vice President for Competitions, PO Box 2096; Fairhope, AL 36532. or email to [email protected]

Chapter Organization

Each Chapter shall elect a President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer (although the Secretary and Treasurer may be one person), a Membership Chairman, a Program Chairman and essential Committees to conduct the affairs of the Chapter.  A set of by-laws shall be adopted by each chapter and serve in its governance.  The chapter by-laws may not be contrary to the International Society's Constitution.

Chapter Activities

Chapters engage in such activities as their members deem most interesting and beneficial to their development as economists.  Chapters in general have an annual installation ceremony for officers and new members.  Ordinarily, the purpose and philosophy of Omicron Delta Epsilon are explained when new members are welcomed and presented with their certificates of membership.  A list of suggested chapter activities can be found in the appendix.  The chapters are encouraged to submit their program of events for each academic year to the Central Office before January 31.

Chapter Advisors

The Faculty Advisor to the Chapter is a faculty member in a department of theoretical or applied economics.  Basically the function of a Chapter Advisor is to provide leadership and continuity so that students may derive maximum benefit from their membership in Omicron Delta Epsilon.

Should a Chapter Advisor find that he or she can no longer continue in this role, he or she is responsible for arranging for the designation of his or her successor and for notifying the Central Office.

Central Office

For further information, contact the Central Office.
P.O. Box 2096
Fairhope, AL  36533
Phone:  (251) 928-0001
Fax: 251-517-7017
E-mail: [email protected]
Home page:  http://www.omicrondeltaepsilon.org

 Directions for Online Registration System

  • EZMember for Faculty Advisers

    The Ezmember portal allows the adviser to create invitation codes to provide to their invited students to allow them to register online for ODE membership, and optionally pay their national fees online with a credit card or Paypal account.

    The adviser can view the status of new registrations, and schedule an induction for the initiates that will prompt Central Office to prepare the initiate materials. The adviser may also register students directly through the portal. Scheduling an induction creates an invoice (and an optional online payment button) for the induction for the balance of any registration fees not already paid.

    Log in

    Log in to the faculty adviser portal at https://members.omicrondeltaepsilon.org/advisers

    Click ‘Log In’, then click ‘Get a Login Reminder’. Select your chapter and enter your name and ODE-recognized email address. The system will send you a password reminder if the email is recognized. Contact Central Office to update your email if it is not.

    Return to the Log In screen to enter the portal.

    Login credentials must be maintained securely by the adviser, and not shared with students, chapter officers, or any other person. ODE admin and Support staff have separate admin access to your portal, and do not need to know your login details at any time.

     - Reports

    The status of your chapter reports is available on the landing page. A button to submit any due reports is available, and a displayed link is available that does not require a login (so that chapter officers may complete a report without a login.)


    Menu items

    >Create invitations

    Here, create a invitation code to give to students you wish to invite to membership. When creating a code, you will set an expiry date, after which the code will become inactive. Expiry dates cannot be changed, but you can create as many invitation codes as you like.

    A valid unexpired code is required for online registration by the student, and should be distributed privately to invited students at your institution only. The student may then register at https://omicrondeltaepsilon.org/register and optionally pay the national fee online using a credit card or any Paypal-approved method. Chapter dues should be collected by the faculty adviser, and students should be made aware there may be this additional fee.

    During registration, students are asked for their name and address, and their personal email address. Use of a permanent address is strongly encouraged, as opposed to their temporary .edu address.

    >View Invitations

    Accepted invitations are shown here, as well as the code used. The payment status is also displayed. If you have instructed students that they must pay online you should remind them to complete their payment using the link given in the registration email sent to them. The individual online Pay link is available on this screen beside each registered student that you may pass on to them if they did not receive the initial registration email.

     >Register Initiates

    It is preferable to have students register using an invitation code and the public registration address, but advisers can register them directly using this page. If registered by an adviser this way, no individual Pay link will be available. Invitation code cut-off dates do not apply to this registration method, but the induction time constraints do.

    >Schedule Induction

    Once your set cut-off date for an invitation is expired, and you have registered any student who accepted their invitation directly with you, you should schedule your chapter induction from this page to prompt Central Office to prepare your induction materials.

    Inspect the status of all the students registered. If any duplicate registrations were entered erroneously, mark those registrations for deletion. Be careful. This is not reversible.

    Enter the date of the inductions and select all the students who will be inducted on this date. An invoice will be calculated for all those checked but not paid. This invoice will be payable by the chapter, not the students, so you should have arrangements to collect their fees personally.


    You must schedule an induction at least 14 days before the date of the induction to allow Central Office enough time to prepare and mail the materials. You cannot circumvent this requirement, so be sure to complete this task on time.

    You cannot add students to an induction after it has been scheduled. You can schedule another, but the time constraints still apply.

    Do not add students to an induction if they have not yet accepted and agreed to pay the fee. If unsure, wait to add them to a later induction.

    At year’s end, ensure all registered students have been added to an induction so that their membership may be completed.


    This page lists all your inductions, with status, dates, initiates included, and payment balances. You can recreate the invoice and payment button for an induction here.

    Status will show ‘Processing’ if Central Office has begun processing your induction, and Completed when processing is complete and the mailing is on its way.

    >Chapter Members

    This page shows the contact details for all your chapter members currently in the EZMember system. A spreadsheet can be downloaded. A ‘correction’ link is available to inform Central Office of any errors.

  • Honorary memberships should be presented only to persons who provide a contribution in the field of economics.  The membership fee is required for each honorary membership.
  • If jewelry and/or membership plaques are ordered, both will be mailed directly to the student unless otherwise indicated. 
  • The central office will accept applications at any time.  Scrolls and group jewelry orders will be mailed to the faculty advisor for distribution.
  • Two weeks should be allowed for the processing of scrolls and four to six weeks for the manufacturing of jewelry that is to be engraved.  More time will be necessary during the spring "rush" season.
  • All members will receive free on-line access to The American Economist.
  • All membership applications, jewelry, plaque orders and changes of address should be sent to:

Omicron Delta Epsilon
P.O. Box 2096
Fairhope, AL 36533
Phone: (251) 928-0001
Fax: 251- 517-7944
E-mail:  [email protected]

Advantages of Having an
Omicron Delta Epsilon

There are many advantages of having a chapter of Omicron Delta Epsilon for the students, the faculty and the Department.  We have listed a few of them below.

Advantages for Students

  • Recognition for scholastic attainments in Economics.
  • Closer academic and professional relationships with the faculty at their own university.
  • Encouragement and stimulation to do outstanding work in Economics.
  • A publications outlet for promising undergraduate and graduate student papers in The American Economist, the economics journal of Omicron Delta Epsilon.
  • Eligibility to compete for the ODE Undergraduate Research and ODE Graduate Research Awards (both cash prizes and publication of essays).
  • Opportunities to present papers at ODE sponsored meetings at the annual conventions of regional, national, and international associations.

Advantages for Faculty and the Department

  • Using chapter membership as a means of conferring distinction to a student for outstanding work in Economics.
  • Closer relationships between students and faculty.
  • Using ODE as a means to stimulate and encourage students to do outstanding work both in Economics and in overall course work.
  • Using ODE as a means of keeping in touch with former Economics majors and assuring their loyalty and support of the Economics Program.
  • Using the regional and national ODE sponsored Economic sessions and The American Economist to encourage students to do research and to publish.
  • Using the awards competitions to encourage students and junior faculty to do research and publish.
  • Utilizing the ODE chapter as a means of recruiting both students and faculty.
  • Having an official organization to represent Economics honorees ant the annual University Honor's Day Program.
  • Obtaining Reading Lists in various subject-matter fields from outstanding universities, as they are published in The American Economist.
  • Using the ODE chapter as an organization to invite Visiting Lecturers in Economics.
  • The presence of an ODE chapter is an indication to the public at large of the existence of a high quality program in Economics.

Suggested Chapter Activities

The following is a list of suggested chapter activities based on the past experience of various chapters:

  • Meetings centered around visits by economists from other academic institutions, research organizations, foundations, government agencies, financial institutions or business firms.
  • Meetings centered around faculty or staff members in economics and related disciplines within the institution where the chapter is located.
  • Meetings centered around panel discussions on topics of current interest.
  • Participation of individual members in regional and national sessions sponsored by ODE or at meetings of professional economists.
  • Tutoring in economics.
  • Field trips to institutions, organizations, public agencies, or private firms of interest.  (The Federal Reserve Banks or Central Banks in different countries, Government Agencies, Consumer Cooperatives, Social Agencies, Neighborhood  Centers, Public Housing Projects, etc., are among the possibilities.)
  • Economic and social economic projects undertaken by the chapter as a whole, by individual members or by groups within the chapter.  (Studies of Particular communities, institutions, groups of individuals, firms, or economic problems have been undertaken and recommendations for changes have, at times, been made.)
  • Publication of bulletins, newsletters, magazines, papers, compendia of members printing, conference proceedings, journals, etc.

Suggestions for Annual Programs and Related Topics

The success and effectiveness your local chapter of ODE achieves will depend upon the interest taken in the chapter by its membership.  And, the interest depends primarily on the type of program established by your chapter.

Each chapter should, prior to the beginning of the academic year, prepare an annual program.  Care should be taken that dates and times of meetings do not conflict with other campus activities that would have a tendency to hold down attendance at the ODE meeting.  The following are suggested types of meetings that might be used on an annual program.

  • Informal Luncheon Meeting (weekly) - If your campus has a dining service or cafeteria, investigate the possibility of having a private room reserved at some specified time period (11:30-1:30) one day each week.  At such a gathering any range of topics could be discussed.  The two hour time span should allow all members to be in attendance at some time during the period.  This type of meeting is very conducive in bringing about a closer relationship between faculty and student members of ODE.
  • Formal Luncheon Meetings (monthly or semi-monthly) - A luncheon meeting with an announced speaker.  Speakers can be recruited from membership, faculty from other departments on campus, from the business community, from other campuses close at hand, and possibly from visitors brought to the campus by the Economics Department for interviews or seminars.
  • Business Meetings (1 or 2 each year) - To carry out discussions concerning the annual program, budget, election of officers and other matters concerning the chapter.
  • Initiation Banquet (1 or 2 each year) - This should be the highlight of the term for your chapter.  If possible, the speaker should be of some renown and can normally be obtained for a nominal cash outlay to defray travel expense.
  • Seminars - Papers presented by the faculty, graduate students and undergraduate students should be encouraged.  On the basis of such seminars, outstanding papers could lead to publications in the "Monograph Series," to selection as a participant at regional or national meetings, or to further research and publication in the better economic or business journals.
  • Financing - There is no special reason or need for a chapter to build up a large cash balance.  However, a nominal amount should be kept on hand to take care of incidental expenses.  Many chapters receive funds from the department, college, or university to defray travel expenses of a featured speaker from off campus who presents a seminar paper or speaks at the initiation banquet.  Some chapters request a local annual fee from their members.
  • Publicity - If there is a campus newspaper, meetings should be announced in it.  Each member (and other interested parties) should be given the annual "calendar of events" of the chapter.  In addition, two or three days before each meeting, memos should be sent to members and notices placed on bulletin boards around the building.  Featured seminar speakers or others appearing at special meetings are worthy of having the fact noted in local newspapers, news broadcasts, faculty newsletters, or other college or university related publications.



DISTINGUISHED ECONOMIST AWARD - ODE is very pleased to announce the recipient of the 2024 Distinguished Economist Award: John List of the University of Chicago. The Award presentation will be Jan. 6, 2024 at 12:30 p.m. in the San Antonio Grand Hyatt Seguin B in conjunction with the ASSA meetings. The Presentation will be followed by his lecture, "Field Experiments in Economics: Uses, Abuses, and How They Can Change the World."

ODE Outstanding Student Leadership Award - Chapter advisors, the February 1 deadline for nominations will be here before you know it. Each year up to three winners are chosen to receive ODE Honor Medallions to recognize students who assume active leadership roles in their ODE chapters. Nominations are made by chapter advisors. Don't miss this opportunity to recognize a deserving student and ODE member.

Omicron Delta Epsilon is proud to be a member of ACHS
Association of College Honor Societies