ByDavid A. Sapenaro
The recently completed “Dialogue with the Fed” series is a new means to engage an important Bank constituent: the general public. We have long held these types of events for other Bank constituents, such as business leaders, bankers and local governmental officials, but this was the first time we had events targeting a more general audience.
We believe that it is important for the general public to have access to experts who can explain important and often complex economic situations and information in layman’s terms—especially in an open forum. We also want the public to have a better understanding of what the Federal Reserve does, why we do it and how we do it and to see firsthand that we are committed to working in the public’s interest. The Dialogues appear to have been effective on all of these fronts because the events were well-attended and, based on feedback from participants, well-received.
Over the past several years, the Bank has emphasized the importance of external outreach, both in person and through electronic means. Our Bank officials and economists devote time each year to meet face to face with constituents throughout the Eighth District to share information and seek anecdotal feedback on the economy and other pressing financial and banking-related issues.
In addition, we have significantly enhanced our web sites and begun using social media tools to provide timely and high-quality economic and financial information. And we have expanded and augmented our outreach to specific constituents, such as teachers and community development professionals, to provide information and materials to help them better perform their responsibilities.
Visit www.stlouisfed.org for more information about our events, programs and economic research. Also, please visit www.stlouisfed.org/about-us/resources/follow-the-fed, where you can use Twitter, Facebook, RSS feeds and more to keep track of the latest information and data.