I was presented this question from a talented colleague who was being challenged by an economics teacher.
Simple answer: yes!
My colleague and I are big fans of GIS and believe that it's a valuable tool in almost any discipline. I took a few minutes, maybe 5 or 10 minutes to be exact, and created an Economics Starter Map. http://bit.ly/JKRSaR
I opened arcgis.com, clicked map at the top of the page, clicked Add and selected search for layers. Now, I'm no economics teacher but I did well in that class and know that they would be studying GDP so I did a search for "gdp" and got a list of several layers. The World Bank has many layers available that also have time sliders that allow you to compare the data over time. I added those, saved my map, shared my map and now I'm sharing it here with you. The lesson here is, "Don't be afraid to look for information before you say it's not valuable to what I teach."
Do you have great economics and mapping materials to share? Comment and share those here!