In this episode of Policy Matters, hosts Matt Dickson and Franz Buscha talk to John Jerrim, Professor of Education and Social Statistics at the Institute of Education, University College London. Matt and Franz begin by asking John about his recent research into ‘overclaiming’ – otherwise known as ‘bullshitting’ (!) – amongst students, and how the findings give potential insights into some of the patterns of labour market outcomes we observe in the UK. John then discusses some of his cross-country comparative work and explains the “Great Gatsby Curve”; linking a country’s level of income inequality and degree of social mobility, and the role of education within the relationship. The programme ends with a discussion of the role of academic quantitative social scientists in informing public policy, how evidence can be mishandled, and how academic practice and the interface with policy might be improved to the benefit of all.
It’s Brexit Day – and whether you voted leave or remain, are celebrating, or commiserating, we wish you a happy one. After 11pm on Friday 31 January 2019, Britain is officially no longer a member of the European Union. The big question is, what happens next? On this week’s podcast, Simon Lambert, Lee Boyce and Georgie Frost discuss both what Brexit means immediately for consumers and travellers, and how things may pan out for the economy and our finances over the year ahead. Where do we stand on Ehic medical cover in Europe, driving on the continent, mobile phone roaming, flight compensation and expat pensions? And what will the trade discussions on our future relationship with Europe and the rest of the world mean for the nation’s finances, businesses, inflation, the pound and interest rates? Also on this week’s podcast, the team dive much deeper into house prices than the usual survey, with a look at 174 years of property affordability and whether we can learn anything from a 70 year period when they got cheaper. They discuss Neil Woodford’s investors getting some money back and finding out how much they have lost so far and the curious case of the Lloyds customer of years who won a surprise bumper PPI payout that proved to be the ultimate loyalty penalty for being ripped off.
In this episode of Policy Matters, hosts Franz Buscha and Matt Dickson talk to ... Matt Dickson and Franz Buscha! It’s been a while since we talked about the policy-relevant research that we are currently pursuing both together and individually, so we take some time to find out what is floating our research boats. Matt talks about a couple of research projects looking at the impact of education on labour market and health outcomes – using different “natural experiments” to try to identify how much education actually affects these things. Franz then tells us about his recent research project on the geography of social mobility in the UK, exploring the nuanced story of social mobility differences between, and within, regions. The discussion concludes with consideration of recent developments in data availability and how that can benefit researchers and policymakers going forward.
The last four decades have been a roller-coaster ride for economic liberalism. Riding high from the early 1990s, falling trade barriers boosted international trade, integrated countries such as China into the global economy and significantly reduced the number of people in absolute poverty. Developments in technology ‘supercharged’ these impacts, radically altering our lives as workers and consumers. In this interview, Peter Urwin speaks to economist Vicky Pryce about where it all went wrong – is the rise of populism simply a reaction to the 2007-08 financial crisis, or is it a wider backlash against liberalism? Not everybody welcomes the changes brought about by globalisation, and change always implies disruption – is there a case for government compensation, targeted at those who bear the brunt of disruption and are less able to take advantage of the gains from liberalisation?
Our public services are in dire need of investment. And it is time to ask what we want our public services to actually do for us. That’s the view of group of economists and campaigners who are pushing for something called ‘Universal Basic Services’ – a radical expansion of high-quality public services for all to areas like transport, childcare and social care. More than 70 years after the creation of the welfare state and the NHS, is it time to reimagine the public services we should all expect? Ayeisha Thomas-Smith is joined by NEF Principle Fellow Anna Coote and openDemocracy Economics Editor Laurie Macfarlane.
Ayeisha Thomas-Smith, Anna Coote, Laurie Macfarlane
This is Money with Georgie Frost, editor Simon Lambert and investing and pensions editor Tanya Jeffries. And as 2019 draws to a close, the team go over the big stories of the past year when a star fell, we all got richer, we all went a little greener, and Brexit didn’t happen – again… And don’t forget you can stay up to date with all the latest, breaking money news, just go to thisismoney.co.uk or download the app.
In this episode of Policy Matters, hosts Franz Buscha and Matt Dickson look back at some of their favourite episodes from 2019, highlighting the things they found most interesting – and in some cases depressing! – about the research findings shared by a selection of different guests.
‘Low-skilled’ or ‘high-skilled’. An ‘economic net contributor’, or ‘a drain on public services’. For decades, immigrants have been treated as scapegoats for everything from failing public services to violent crime. And much too often, as less than human But how did we get here? How did the public conversation about immigration become so toxic? And is there another way forward – an alternative to the hostile environment? This week, New Economics Foundation is at SOAS with a live audience and Maya Goodfellow, author of ‘Hostile Environment: How immigrants became scapegoats’.
In this episode of Policy Matters, hosts Franz Buscha and Matt Dickson talk to Gemma Tetlow, Chief Economist at the Institute for Government. Gemma was previously the economics correspondent at the Financial Times and also worked for many years as an academic economist and so has broad experience of economists’ work from a variety of angles. Firstly, Gemma discusses the work of the Institute, and how the demands that Brexit has placed on the government has hindered domestic policymaking. Given her experience as both a researcher and economic journalist, Franz and Matt go on to discuss with Gemma how economics is reported in the media, the difficulty of explaining the complexities of the economy in ‘public-friendly’ ways and what economists can learn in this area from other sciences. The discussion then turns to thinking about how economists interact with policymakers and how this has evolved over time, before Gemma talks about the policies that she would like to see considered in public and policy debate, whoever is developing the domestic policy agenda in the post-Brexit UK.
Will this election really prove to be about Brexit? That issue was predicted to define the vote, but while each party’s Brexit stance will be at the forefront of people’s minds there are many other factors that now seem to be heavily influencing how the 12 December general election is shaping up. One of the biggest is the battle over the economy and our personal finances. There’s a sizeable difference between Labour’s tax and spending plans and those of the Tories. Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats propose their own sizeable tax and spending rises but at less than half the Labour increase. So what do all these promises and plans mean for you? On this week’s podcast, Georgie Frost, Simon Lambert and Lee Boyce dig into the Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat manifestos to find out. What is the chance of any of their plans working? Will the tax rises pull in the money expected – and can the spending be used wisely? And what of the other things Britain needs to achieve? Is more housebuilding compatible with combatting climate change, protecting the environment and looking after the countryside – and what have beavers got to do with it?