What happens to citizens’ political preferences when they are confronted with economic hardship? This longstanding question has recently attracted renewed attention in the wake of the Great Recession. Nonetheless, many matters remain unresolved. For example, which types of preferences are affected? Are we mainly talking about views on concrete policy issues and politicians’ approval ratings, or are more deep-seated […]
Wartime rhetoric, especially harking back to World War II, pervades public discourse in many fields. In the UK, this is currently a device associated particularly with the Brexit ‘debate’. But here and around the world such emotive framing now extends to the climate emergency. Esteemed economist Joseph Stiglitz has referred to the climate crisis as humanity’s Third World War, […]
Across the world, many people aren’t saving enough money to be able to retire from work, or to be prepared for emergencies. Some of these people have very low incomes, but others earn a lot, they just spend most of it. Personally, I’ve been in both situations. In the years before I went to graduate school, I worked in […]
Gender identity norms such as the male bread-winner model are possible drivers of persistent gender inequalities in the labour market. However, the extent to which they restrict the behaviour of couples is debated. While the simple observation of men’s and women’s specialisation in market and domestic work may be revealing of gender identity norms, the observed time allocation of […]
In the early 20th century a ship travelling from San Francisco to New York or on to Europe first had to travel over 13,000 miles around the entirety of South America. That all changed in August of 1914 with the opening of the Panama Canal, bridging the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. And while the new canal cut the distance […]
Many countries have begun to think about trade diversification. After all, one of the reasons for Brexit was to allow the UK to trade more freely with the world other than the EU. This is partly because policy makers are raising concerns regarding the risks, largely political, arising from overly concentrating trade and investment on a small number of […]
Over the course of 2018, the Trump administration imposed import tariffs on approximately $283 billion of US imports, with rates ranging between 10 and 50 per cent. In response, US trading partners, especially China, retaliated with tariffs averaging 16 per cent on approximately $121 billion of US exports, plunging the United States into its first episode of large-scale reciprocal […]
Today’s polarising politics are characterised by deep geographical ruptures, clearly visible in the Brexit referendum, as well as in national elections in the US, France, Italy, Germany and elsewhere. This has shone a spotlight on the severe and persistent regional disparities in economic opportunity between former industrial heartlands and service-based cities, which afflict many countries in the developed world.
A growing number of companies claim to place a high priority on the wellbeing of their workers – and there is a fast-growing industry of firms selling products related to employee wellbeing. But does investing in employee wellbeing actually lead to higher productivity and are there any tangible benefits to the business bottom line? Experimental evidence such as Oswald […]
Large economic and political turbulence occurs in the aftermath of financial crises. What starts as panic in a single financial market or institution usually propagates rapidly to other agents of the economy and might necessitate an urgent and decisive reaction from policymakers. However, it is difficult to predict, a priori, whether the reaction of policymakers to the crisis would […]
The past two decades have seen a large increase in the number of workers engaged in “atypical” work arrangements. This type of work includes employment like zero-hour contracts (ZHCs), gig work such as driving an uber or taskrabbiting, and various types of other self-employment like freelancing. In the UK, the proportion of solo self-employed (e.g. freelancers, contractors, gig and […]
Policymakers the world over are exploring a range of strategies to mitigate and adapt to greenhouse-gas emissions and manage the unavoidable effects of climate change.
At the 21st Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 21), representatives agreed to keep any increase in global average temperature within 2°C of pre-industrial levels and also […]
Technological change facilitates long run growth, but labour-replacing technologies are often perceived as a threat to the livelihood of workers. The recent wave of technologies is no longer confined to replacing routine workers such as machine operative and clerical workers: it could well reduce the employment of, among others, drivers, lawyers, and even fashion designers. Since more occupations are […]
The opinion on the benefits of free trade, and of multilateral agreements, which are free trade’s preferred policy companion, has changed through history. After having enjoyed some decades of favour, the support to multilateralism (and free trade) seems to be declining. The theoretical premise that the free market equilibrium is efficient is the basis for multilateralism. Economists learn in […]
It’s about time that we renewed a conversation about what it means an active digital citizen in the 21st century. The current conditions of our data-driven economy demand that we explore ways to deny technologies the possibility to control us.
Unfortunately, Broadband Technology Opportunities Program, which was the Obama Administration’s signature digital inclusion policy effort, marks the last time the US […]
In the last decades the hottest areas of medical innovation have been the fields of targeted therapies and personalised medicine – medical treatments tailored to the specific molecular features of patients or diseases. Monoclonal antibodies are the prime example of successful targeted therapies, while genuinely personalised treatments have not been as forthcoming as expected. The greatest promise in this […]
Spring is traditionally the season of regrowth and new hope. And this is certainly the case with the resurgence in efforts this year in Europe to confront the climate crisis. Over a few short weeks in April and May – what I like to call the ‘Climate Spring’ of 2019 – an extraordinary pattern of events converged to swing […]
The UK set its first climate change target back in 1997 under the Kyoto Protocol. With a commitment to reduce emissions by 12.5 per cent below 1990 levels between 2008 and 2012, the target allowed for incremental decarbonisation efforts as opposed to an economy-wide transition. Nonetheless, the UK managed to reduce its carbon intensity (tonnes of carbon emitted per […]
In March 2017 a terrorist drove a car over Westminster Bridge near the Houses of Parliament killing six people and injuring at least 50. In May of that year another terrorist detonated a home-made bomb at the Manchester Arena killing over 20 people, wounding more than 100 including many children and causing countless others psychological trauma. In the following […]
When the conservative government insists that traded corporations and investment funds should be left to self-regulate around the climate emergency they should recognise that the only arguments supporting them are the theories that gave us the global financial crisis. But if the crisis taught us anything it was that unregulated financial markets are not, in fact, rational in the […]