Monthly Archives: March 2018

How The Economist has portrayed austerity since 1945

“The unpalatable truth is that austerity lies ahead, whoever wins at the polls and whatever the parties say before then.” This is how the The Economist addressed the state of British public finance ahead of the 2010 General Election. There simply was no alternative to austerity, and the UK public sector had to be put “on a prolonged harsh diet”.

As journalism scholars have […]

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    Cambridge Analytica and the deeper malaise in the persuasion industry

Cambridge Analytica and the deeper malaise in the persuasion industry

Recent revelations about Cambridge Analytica’s strategies and tactics have caused shock and outrage, in part because we want democratic processes to be just that, democratic. Decisions arrived at through popular suffrage – the next government, the decision about whether or not to leave the European Union – are ideally based on people’s rational, evidence-based opinions rather than manipulated emotional drivers such […]

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    Reflections on money, trust and the pursuit of self-interest

Reflections on money, trust and the pursuit of self-interest

‘People are naturally selfish’. The contemporary evidence seems overwhelming. And yet, even today, most people devote some of their lives to others as parents and carers, and many also as volunteers. Prior to the modern world, people frequently led lives governed by custom, duty, compassion, or faith, in societies where there was limited scope for the pursuit of self-interest. […]

When work interrupts us after hours

The changing landscape of technology-enabled connectivity is shifting how our work and personal lives interface, especially how we juggle work and non-work demands. In large part due to the ubiquitous nature of mobile devices that blur the boundaries between our work and personal lives, work has now become a significant presence in our life outside the workplace, interrupting our […]

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    Is it labour or capital owners who bear the burden of corporate taxation?

Is it labour or capital owners who bear the burden of corporate taxation?

The incidence of corporate taxation is a key issue in tax policy debates. According to surveys, most people think that capital owners bear the burden of corporate taxation. Since capital owners usually have high incomes, this suggests that the corporate tax is highly progressive. Business lobbyists challenge this view and argue that the tax reduces investment so that labour […]

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    Should schools bother with modern human resources management?

Should schools bother with modern human resources management?

For decades, private sector firms have been aware of the benefits they can derive by investing in the management of their employees. Incentivising employees through individual and group performance pay allows firms to attract the best talent and increases worker effort. Fostering employee ‘ownership’ of the production process through team-working, initially pushed by Japanese manufacturing firms like Toyota, are […]

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    Long Read Review: Minority Women and Austerity: Survival and Resistance in France and Britain

Long Read Review: Minority Women and Austerity: Survival and Resistance in France and Britain

This review is published as part of a March 2018 endeavour, ‘A Month of Our Own: Amplifying Women’s Voices on LSE Review of Books’. If you would like to contribute to the project in this month or beyond, please contact us at Lsereviewofbooks@lse.ac.uk. If you are interested in this review, you may also like to listen to/watch a recording of Professor Akwugo […]

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    Britain could be excluded from EU decision-making bodies during the Brexit transition

Britain could be excluded from EU decision-making bodies during the Brexit transition

There is one aspect of Britain’s proposed transition out of the European Union that risks being overlooked. Britain – its government, businesses and individuals such as academics, NGOs and researchers – could be excluded from EU decision-making bodies, agencies and expert groups from 29 March 2019 during the transition period. As others have already said, Britain risks becoming a rule-taker, […]

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    Leslie Willcocks: the role automation plays in creating jobs has been largely ignored

Leslie Willcocks: the role automation plays in creating jobs has been largely ignored

Leslie Willcocks, professor of technology, work and globalisation at LSE’s Department of Management, finds incoherence and exaggeration surrounding the application of artificial intelligence and cognitive automation to work. In this video (3′ 26″), he discusses some of the findings in his new book. 


The video was recorded at Open House, a gathering of global teaching institutions offering the Economics, Management, Finance and […]

The impact of the technical revolution on our well-being

At the recent XXI World Congress on Safety and Health in Singapore, Hans-Horst Konkolewsky, Secretary General of the International Social Security Association (ISSA), asked a large audience of international leaders and safety practitioners whether the fourth industrial revolution, largely driven by digital technology, will be good or bad for worker’s health and safety.

Overwhelmingly the answer that came back was […]

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    Facebook and Cambridge Analytica: let this be the high-water mark for impunity

Facebook and Cambridge Analytica: let this be the high-water mark for impunity

The last few days represent more than just the most recent and inevitable controversy emanating from Facebook’s beleaguered offices. The scandal over Cambridge Analytica’s participation in electoral manipulation and gross breaches of privacy have resonated more widely with users than the earlier allegations about fake news and Russian connections.

On an individual level, Facebook users have to contend with the […]

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    Intellectual property rights and the transfer of low-carbon technologies to other countries

Intellectual property rights and the transfer of low-carbon technologies to other countries

Wide access to clean technologies is crucial to meet the Paris Agreement goal of limiting the increase in global temperatures to well below 2 degrees Celsius. This requires considerable technology transfers from North to South as 90 per cent of the increase in global carbon emissions until 2050 is expected to occur in the developing world, while the vast […]

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    How the law profession adjusts to competitive changes in the UK

How the law profession adjusts to competitive changes in the UK

The UK legal industry is currently navigating a state of transition and flux, largely brought on by a sharp, unrelenting increase in competition. This level of change has led to an increasingly fragmented industry, as individual law firms make sense of and respond to these changes in different ways. Technology, and website design in particular, provides firms with the […]

Detecting deception across media and cultures

You are sitting in your office in Montréal, in the middle of a Skype videoconference with your team in Hyderabad. The quality of the transmission, both video and audio, is very good. When you ask your colleagues about some delays in their deliverables, they assure you everything is fine. Then they start talking among themselves in Hindi. After a […]

The trade impact of the transatlantic telegraph

How do exporters gather information about overseas markets and forecast consumer demand for their products? What do they do if technology suddenly makes it possible to get access to better and more timely information? And what is the overall impact on prices, market integration and trade flows? These are challenging questions in the modern world of the internet and […]

Do apprenticeships increase earnings?

Is there an earnings differential for starting an apprenticeship over and above the pay of young people who have already had a full-time school or college-based education? Our research looks at people who finished their GCSE exams in 2003 and who were therefore 28 years of age in 2015. We use administrative data to follow them from 2003 through […]

How poor is poor? The many dimensions of poverty in the UK

Poverty is an on-going problem facing all societies, and there are many different ways of exploring the issue. On the one hand, there is concern with inequality, including the drivers behind the unequal allocation of advantage vs. disadvantage. On the other hand, there is concern with measurement and definition. In the latter case, poverty defined in relative terms implies […]

Bitcoin may not last, but blockchain could be the real deal

Economist Nouriel Roubini, aka Dr. Doom since he predicted the 2008 financial crisis, called it “the mother of all bubbles.” The head of the Royal Bank of Scotland, Sir Howard Davies, invoked Dante’s Inferno to warn investors off it. JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon flat-out called it a “fraud” – at least initially.

The target of this opprobrium was bitcoin, […]

Seven recommended books on housing and urban development

In November 1942, the UK government published the Social Insurance and Allied Services report, which became known as the Beveridge Report, after its author, economist William Beveridge (Director of LSE from 1919 to 1937). Seventy-five years later, the LSE Festival Beveridge 2.0 (19 to 24 February) offered a week of public engagement activities exploring the five ‘Giant Evils’  in society identified in the report: squalor, ignorance, want, idleness, […]

Forging a new UK-wide agricultural framework post-Brexit

Agriculture is one of those areas currently both devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and subject to European policy-making. If nothing else were done, these competences would revert to the devolved territories, with little by way of overall UK policies. The EU Withdrawal Bill proposes that these, like other ‘retained EU competences’, should come back to Westminster, with […]