Comparing the standard of living today with that of the past is crucial to understanding the UK’s economic and social health. In fact, both in our everyday lives and in studies of social sciences, we often assess economic progress by comparing our standard of living to that of our parents. A recent poll by Ipsos Mori shows that only […]
Talented individuals are often excluded from leadership positions if they belong to a group that faces discrimination. Such discrimination is, of course, extremely hurtful and unfair to the individuals. But is it also costly in a more general sense?
In particular, do corporations become less profitable when they adopt discriminatory attitudes and exclude highly qualified individuals from leadership roles? How […]
Britain has an extensive canal and navigable river network, which played a vital role in transporting goods from the Industrial Revolution through the 18th, 19th and early part of the 20th centuries. Their use for transporting freight had all but disappeared by the mid-20th century, and many had fallen into disrepair or been abandoned. Since then, the canal and […]
While economists extol the virtues of trade, advocates of free trade face stiff political headwinds these days. The economic ideas for the benefits of trade go back more than 200 years to Adam Smith and David Ricardo, but empirical evidence for these benefits has been much harder to come by and is much more recent.
In particular, empirical economists have […]
Fundamental changes in information technologies have profound implications for labour markets, for the production and spread of knowledge, and for the evolution of politics and beliefs. But competition among producers also influences the use of these technologies and their impact on multiple dimensions of life. The introduction of Gutenberg’s printing press crystallised these dynamics and profoundly shaped the long-run […]
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on June 20th 2018 that recreational cannabis would become legal in Canada as of October 17th. The major social policy change formed part of the general election platform for Trudeau’s Liberal Party in 2015, which suggested that “To ensure that we keep marijuana out of the hands of children, and the profits out of […]
The UK’s vote to leave the EU has generated fears that UK firms are moving investment abroad because of Brexit. For example, media reports have documented that both large UK companies such as Barclays, HSBC and EasyJet, and smaller companies such as Crust & Crumb, a Northern Irish pizza maker, have invested in the EU27 in response to Brexit.
Stagnating real wages and falling labour shares across developed economies have stimulated a renewed interest in the question of how, and to what extent, rents are shared with labour. Nicholas Kaldor’s (1957) long-held stylised fact that the fraction of national income going to labour is fixed has been questioned, for instance, by Karabarbounis and Neiman (2014), who show that the global labour […]
Our work at the Institute for the Future of Work (IFOW) has been focusing on two major forces of disruption that the UK economy is experiencing. The first, Brexit, will involve a sharp change in the structure of economic activity. Membership of the European Union has shaped the British model of capitalism and the structure, and operation, of core industrial […]
Members of Parliament’s vote on British Prime Minister’s Theresa May’s Brexit deal today. Without hesitation, they should vote it down.
More and more people have realised that Brexit was built on a fantasy that we could keep all the benefits of being in the European club without paying any of the membership fees – what leading Brexiter Boris Johnson called […]
The UK and EU have reached a Brexit deal. But what will the withdrawal agreement mean for the UK economy? To address this question we have analysed how the withdrawal deal and a no-deal scenario would affect income per capita in the UK, relative to the baseline of staying in the EU, through changes in trade costs.
Scenario 1: The […]
One David was born in a terraced house in East London, his father a kitchen fitter, his mother a hairdresser. The other David grew up in an idyllic village in the English countryside, his father a stockbroker, his mother the daughter of a baronet. The first David left school at 16 without any qualifications; the second studied at Eton […]
The UK has a world-leading university sector and this has a key role to play in moving the country onto an inclusive and sustainable growth path. Universities can make important contributions across the five foundations that underpin the government’s industrial strategy:
Universities support the productivity and prospects for ‘people’ through the education of students and the nurturing of researchers.
The UK’s poor productivity performance has been the source of much debate and policy focus over the last few years. Without an increase in productivity, we won’t see rising wages or higher standards of living. Against a backdrop of continued wage stagnation and huge variations in productivity across the country, the government has invited local leaders up and down […]
The Trump administration is considering measures to restrict Chinese citizens from performing sensitive research at American universities and research institutions. The boycott appears to be motivated by fears that Chinese researchers may be carrying out espionage activities and handing over sensitive US discoveries to the Chinese government.
The exact details of the restrictions are still under discussion but they would […]
All high-income countries, as well as several developing countries, have policies in place to make it easier for people to balance their working lives with their family commitments. These include parental leave, childcare support and flexible work arrangements, to name just a few. The impact of these policy provisions on the labour market outcomes of parents, and especially mothers, […]
Since 2016, two of the world’s largest economies – those of the US and the UK – have made major shifts away from global economic integration. First, the British electorate voted to leave the EU. Since then, the Trump administration has sparked a global trade war which currently shows no signs of dissipating, with tariffs having already been imposed […]
Currency unions are an important institutional arrangement to facilitate international trade and reduce trade costs. In the period since World War II, a total of 123 countries have been involved in a currency union at some point. By the year 2015, 83 countries continued to do so. In addition, various countries are considering to form new currency unions or […]
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 […]
Cross-country investment flows are a peculiar trait of the modern economy and have been progressively increasing in the last two decades. Even with a substantial decline after the Great Recession, there were 2.86 trillion of dollars net flows in 2016, according to data published by the World Bank. There has been an intense debate on the effects of this investment on […]