Monthly Archives: July 2018

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    Governing Compact Cities: How to Connect Planning, Design and Transport – Book Review

Governing Compact Cities: How to Connect Planning, Design and Transport – Book Review

Governing Compact Cities: How to Connect Planning, Design and Transport. Philipp Rode. Edward Elgar. 2018.

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Philipp Rode’s new book, Governing Compact Cities: How to Connect Planning, Design and Transport, looks at the institutional arrangements that enable sustainable cities. It starts with the recognition that in many cases, sustainable cities are also compact cities, characterised by mixed-use neighbourhoods and […]

July 22nd, 2018|Book Review|0 Comments|

We must challenge the centrality of paid work in our lives

Unemployed people tend to have significantly worse health and wellbeing compared to people in paid work. With hundreds of empirical studies, this is one of the most persistent findings in social science research and holds across time and place.

In trying to explain the impact of unemployment on health, researchers have often been drawn to the social psychologist Marie Jahoda’s influential theory. […]

July 21st, 2018|Labour|1 Comment|
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    How would-be entrepreneurs can harness the power of the internet of things

How would-be entrepreneurs can harness the power of the internet of things

The internet of things – it’s a wonderfully vague term, but one that both consumers and businesses will have been hearing a lot over recent years. IoT is, after all, one of the single biggest areas of technological development that is reshaping the world around us. In short, the umbrella term refers to the way in which devices – […]

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    The 1971 UK banking deregulation had a positive effect on firms

The 1971 UK banking deregulation had a positive effect on firms

Starting in the 1970s, various countries deregulated their banking systems and abandoned the strict rules that governed financial institutions since the Great Depression. Deregulation was intended to increase competition in the credit market, improve consumers’ welfare but it has been indicated by many observers to be at the roots of the 2008 financial crisis. Despite the large interest in […]

Why CEOs misbehave

Sometimes CEOs misbehave. This misbehaviour has terrible consequences for the CEO, the organisation and society, yet still – they do it. Recent estimates suggest that fraud, a specific type of wrongdoing, results in a loss of 5 per cent of sales for a typical company every year and a global loss of about $3.7 trillion. With such clear consequences, […]

The future of work and how we can change it

If there is one overriding narrative is that the future of work consists of more insecure, poor quality and low wage work and/or no jobs at all as robots, AI and automation replace human beings. These narratives are wrong, at least in the foreseeable future, which I arbitrarily put at 20 years. Futurologists and science fiction writers are better […]

Why do large companies pay higher salaries?

Why do small establishments pay employees less than large establishments? The final pieces of this puzzle have not been found yet. This paper suggests the joint role of the division of labour and employee characteristics as an additional explanation for the firm-size wage gap.

The intuition is that individuals who work for large firms focus on a limited number of […]

Economics for the Common Good – Book Review

Economics for the Common Good. Jean Tirole (trans. by Stephen Randall). Princeton University Press. 2017.

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Economics – that seemingly impenetrable mix of mathematical wizardry and eye-glazing theorising – has long appeared wholly inaccessible to the majority of the public (and even, it might be added, many members of the intelligentsia). Its roots were remarkably readable – for […]

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    The flaws of randomised controlled trials and the reproducibility crisis

The flaws of randomised controlled trials and the reproducibility crisis

Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) are generally viewed as the foundational experimental method of the social and medical sciences. Economists depend on them, for certain questions, as their most valued method. Yet RCTs are not flawless. In my study, “Why all randomised controlled trials produce biased results”, I argue that RCTs are not able to establish precise causal effects of an […]

Collectivists, individualists and indifferents

Consumers increasingly prefer to purchase sustainable and healthy products. This trend is important if we are to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

However, most evidence about consumer preferences is based on self-reported purchases rather than consumers’ actual purchases. Moreover, when asked, consumers tend to overstate their sustainability and health-conscious purchases.

The problem with this situation is that companies wishing […]

July 13th, 2018|Environment|0 Comments|
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    Following in the parents’ footsteps: nepotism or transfer of skills?

Following in the parents’ footsteps: nepotism or transfer of skills?

The observed low rate of social mobility in several contemporary societies is a matter of a lively debate. Is it the unavoidable consequence of the transmission (genetic or not) of skills and abilities? Or is it mostly the result of an unfair society that prevents an efficient allocation of talents and favours children with better social connections?

Liberal professions such […]

July 12th, 2018|Labour|0 Comments|
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    The new federalism: blockchain will decentralise big tech’s power on the internet

The new federalism: blockchain will decentralise big tech’s power on the internet

For most of history, the only form of government that humanity had known was despotism. Pharaohs, tsars, emperors and kings enjoyed a centralised and absolute power. The world had known but a few democratic experiences in the Athenian polis, the Roman Republic, and the Florence and Venice of the Renaissance.

In the 18th century, revolutions in France and the United […]

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    The level of trust in a country affects environmental compliance by firms

The level of trust in a country affects environmental compliance by firms

What affects how compliant businesses are with environmental regulations? Traditional enforcement measures such as fines and inspections by authorities can be an effective deterrent for rule-breaking. Recent research has also shown that information-based enforcement tools can be effective at increasing compliance, for instance a “watch list” in the Clean Air Act in the United States that keeps track of […]

July 11th, 2018|Environment|0 Comments|
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    UK entrepreneurship is doing well, but key constraints need to be addressed

UK entrepreneurship is doing well, but key constraints need to be addressed

Experts in the field of entrepreneurship recently met at the LSE to discuss reform strategies proposed in a new policy brief, which seeks to promote entrepreneurship in the UK. Mark Sanders, associate professor at the Utrecht University School of Economics, presented on behalf of the Financial and Institutional Reforms for Entrepreneurial Society (FIRES) research team, following the publication of its seven step […]

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    Robots, robots everywhere. What does it mean for developing countries?

Robots, robots everywhere. What does it mean for developing countries?

Stunning technological advances in robotics and artificial intelligence are being reported virtually on a daily basis: from the versatile mobile robots in agriculture and manufacturing jeans to autonomous vehicles and 3D-printed buildings.

In fact, the International Federation of Robotics estimates that next year the stock of industrial robots will grow by more than 250,000 units per year concentrated in production […]

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    Misfit: what do you do when you can’t be yourself at work?

Misfit: what do you do when you can’t be yourself at work?

The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them.  —   Steve Jobs
Most of us, like Steve Jobs, have come […]

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    The People vs Tech: How the Internet is Killing Democracy (and How We Can Save It) – Book Review

The People vs Tech: How the Internet is Killing Democracy (and How We Can Save It) – Book Review

The People vs Tech: How the Internet is Killing Democracy (and How We Can Save It). Jamie Bartlett. Ebury Press. 2018.

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Technology firms have long been run under a simple rule: scale fast, ask questions later. Over the last thirty years, giddy start-ups have transformed into multi-billion-dollar conglomerates, with the first ever trillion-dollar firm expected to be […]

July 8th, 2018|Book Review|0 Comments|

The widespread increase in the skills gap across UK regions

Given that the Brexit negotiations are far from reaching a consensus, the potential implications of any deal for skilled migration continue to attract a great deal of attention. Recent research has shown that almost a million EU citizens who work in the UK, many of whom are highly qualified, are planning to leave, all while the UK is already suffering from […]

‘Trade policy 3.0’ will foster inclusive trade

In a recent article for LSE Business Review, I introduced the classification of “trade policy 3.0” and the emergent “internet of rules” (IoR): a networked repository of executable forms of rules written in computer language. The distinctive character of trade policy 3.0 is that, in addition to “writing down the rules” of trade in natural language (trade policy 1.0) […]

When CEO hubris leads to environmental innovation

Rupert Murdoch, Marissa Mayer, Jean Marie Messier. What do they have in common? All of them are famous CEOs of successful or unsuccessful business empires and all, at some point, were accused for their hubristic personalities. The ‘hubris syndrome’ is a psychological state affecting leaders in positions of authority and power. It is characterised by an exaggerated self-belief, sense […]