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New analysis published
Poor lose, and rich gain from direct tax and benefit changes since May 2010 – without cutting the deficit

New analysis from Essex University and the LSE analyses the impact of benefit and direct tax changes since the election in detail. This shows that the poorest income groups lost the biggest share of their incomes on average, and those in the bottom half of incomes lost overall.
  • In contrast those in the top half of incomes gained from direct tax cuts, with the exception of most of the top 5 per cent – although within this 5 percent group those at the very top gained, because of the cut in the top rate of income tax.

  • In total, the changes have not contributed to cutting the deficit.  Rather, the savings from reducing benefits and tax credits have been spent on raising the tax-free income tax allowance.

  • The analysis challenges the idea that those with incomes in the top tenth have lost as great a share of their incomes as those with the lowest incomes

The full paper can be downloaded here (pdf)

The research, by Paola De Agostini, John Hills and Holly Sutherland suggests that who has gained or lost most as a result of the Coalition’s policy changes depends critically on when reforms are measured from.

  • Treasury analysis, suggesting that those at the top have lost proportionately most starts from January 2010 and therefore includes the effects of income tax changes at the top announced by Labour in 2009 and taking effect in April 2010, before the election.

  • But if the Coalition’s impacts are measured comparing the system in 2014-15 with what would have happened if the system inherited in May 2010, they have more clearly regressive effect. 

  • This resulted from the combination of: changes to benefits and tax credits making them less generous for the bottom and middle of the distribution; changes to Council Tax and benefits from which those in the bottom half lost but the top half gained; higher personal income tax allowances which meant the largest gains for those in the middle, but with some income tax increases for the top 5 per cent; and the ‘triple lock’ on state pensions which were most valuable as a proportion of their incomes for the bottom half.

  • Some groups were clear losers on average – including lone parent families, large families, children, and middle-aged people (at the age when many are parents), while others were gainers, including two-earner couples, and those in their 50s and early 60s.

Prof Sutherland, Director of EUROMOD at the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex commented: “It is striking how seemingly technical issues or minor differences in assumptions like which tax system is taken as the starting point for Coalition reforms, or whether to assume 100% take-up of benefits have very big implications for what we conclude about whether the rich or the poor were harder hit.”  

Prof Hills, Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion at LSE, commented: “What is most remarkable about these results is that the overall effect of direct tax and benefit changes under the Coalition have not contributed to cutting the deficit.  The savings from benefit reforms have been offset by the cost of raising the tax-free income tax allowance.  But those with incomes in the bottom half have lost more on average from benefit and tax credit changes than they have gained from the higher tax allowance.”

Paola De Agostini is Senior Research Officer at the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex.

John Hills is Professor of Social Policy and Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE) at the London School of Economics.    

Holly Sutherland is Research Professor and Director of EUROMOD at the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex. 

The paper was prepared as part of CASE’s Social Policy in a Cold Climate programme, which is funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Nuffield Foundation, and with London-specific analysis funded by the Trust for London.  The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the funders.  The analysis uses the tax-benefit model, EUROMOD, based at the University of Essex.

News Posted: 16 November 2014      [Back to the Top]

The Executive Time Use Project
What do CEOs do all day?

Markerplace's Sally Herships interviewed Professor Andrea Prat from Columbia University, who is one of the principal investigator of STICERD's Executive Time Use Project. In the article from November 10th, Prat points out that CEOs spend most of their days in meetings. And, he notes, most of the meetings are with employees inside the company. Contrary to common belief, he says that the more time a CEO spends in meetings with his or her employees, the better the company does.

The Executive Time Use Project is an international data collection effort to analyze how corporate leaders in the US, Europe and Asia organiser their working time. It generates reports that help policy makers understand the behaviour and the priorities of top corporate leaders.

News Posted: 14 November 2014      [Back to the Top]

Department of Social Policy public lecture
Good Times Bad Times: the welfare myth of them and us

Date: Wednesday 12 November 2014 
Time: 6.30-8pm 
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building
Speaker: Professor Sir John Hills
Respondents: Polly Toynbee and  Professor Holly Sutherland
Chair: Professor Julian Le Grand 

This ground-breaking book Good Times Bad Times: the welfare myth of them and us by John Hills, challenges the idea of a divide in the UK population between those who benefit from the welfare state and those who pay into it.

Listen here to John Hills' interview on BBC Radio 2's Jeremy Vine show, where he answers questions from members of the public

Here are are links to reviews/blogs of the book:

LSE Policy & Politics blog

New Statesman blog (Gavin Kelly): 11/11/14

LSE blog: with Podcast

Guardian review

Times Higher Education Book of the Week

Click here for the audio recording and presentation slides
from this event. A video recording is available here

The hashtag for this event for Twitter users:   #LSEwelfaremyth


News Posted: 12 November 2014      [Back to the Top]

What do CEOs do all day?

Corporate titans, leaders of Fortune 500 companies, wearers of starched white shirts, winners of enormous paychecks and occupiers of corner offices with imposing black desks and gleaming glass views. It's easy to conjure images of CEOs in offices... but what, exactly, is it that they do in there all day?

This article was published by Marketplace on 10th November 2014. Link to full article

Related publications:

Managing the Family Firm: Evidence from CEOs at Work? by Oriana Bandiera (LSE) Andrea Prat (Columbia) Raffaella Sadun (HBS).

News Posted: 10 November 2014      [Back to the Top]

New blog post
The cuts in local government funding have had a significant impact on London's most deprived communities

How has the significant cuts to local authority funding affected front-line services? There had undoubtedly been enormous strain on services and front-line staff, with councils have argued that the limits to efficiency have been reached. Amanda Fitzgerald presents findings from a new report for the Trust for London into the most deprived communities in London. Read the blog at LSE British Politics and Policy

News Posted: 23 October 2014      [Back to the Top]

Disabled people are worth the National Minimum Wage:
Lord Freud's widely-reported recent remark that some disabled people are not ‘worth' the National Minimum Wage (NMW) is not supported by CASE research

By Abigail McKnight and Tania Burchardt

Just before the minimum wage was introduced back in April 1999, disabled people were disproportionately employed in jobs paying less that the NMW rate: 8.5% of disabled men compared to 5.3% of non-disabled men, and 20% of disabled women compared to 13.2% of non-disabled women. This meant that they stood to gain from significant wage increases – but they were also most at risk of lay-offs, if employers responded to the introduction of the minimum wage by reducing the number of their employees.  

At the time, there were a number of calls for disabled people to be made exempt from the NMW for this reason. But our research found that both disabled and non-disabled men and women actually increased their chances of remaining in work over the period that the NMW was introduced.  This was no doubt due to the buoyant labour market at that time.  We also found no evidence among disabled men or among disabled women that changes in their chances of remaining in work were significantly lower than for non-disabled men or non-disabled women respectively.

We concluded that exempting disabled employees from the NMW would be likely to increase discrimination against disabled people by giving a clear signal to employers and others that disabled workers could be treated less favourably. This is in direct opposition to the Equality Act. The vast majority of disabled employees earning less than the NMW before it was introduced did not lose their jobs following its introduction. The introduction of the NMW therefore led to an increase in the wage of these low-paid disabled employees, and, although it was not covered in our original research, one would expect that subsequent increases in the minimum wage have similarly benefitted disabled people in the labour market. 

We suggest that a much better approach would be to continue to keep disabled employees under the scope of the NMW legislation, improve the enforcement of the Equality Act and to support disabled employees with very low intrinsic levels of productivity through supported employment services. Furthermore policy would be better targeted at addressing the low levels of skill and education among parts of the disabled population, which is most often the root cause of low wages and high rates of non-employment.

In the light of the recent comments made by Lord Freud that some disabled people are not worth the National Minimum Wage we would like to suggest that our research findings are just as relevant today as they were when first produced in 2003. Disabled people have been major net gainers from the NMW and there is no evidence to support the case that they should be exempt.

Research paper: Disability and the National Minimum Wage: A Special CASE?

News Posted: 20 October 2014      [Back to the Top]

New report launched
Hard times, new directions? The impact of local government spending cuts on three deprived neighbourhoods

CASE researchers, with funding from Trust for London, have examined, through an in-depth case study approach, three London councils’ responses to the cuts, as well as what those responses have meant for services and residents of one of the most deprived wards of each borough.  The research focused on services for families with under-fives, young people 16-24 and older people 65+.

Key findings include:

  • Front line services for under-fives and young people have been impacted in all wards (with the exception of under-fives services in Camden) but not to the degree we might have expected from the extent of local government spending cuts.
  •  Staff reductions were widely reported in these services and were the principal change in most cases.  Those reductions were being offset as far as possible through paid staff doing more and through use of volunteers.  For this reason more extensive impact to the front line had to this point been avoided.
  • Services for older people had been affected more than services for under-fives and young people in all three wards.  Losses of day centres, reductions in activities, or higher charges had occurred across the case studies.  Adult Social Care makes up the largest part of council spending and as councils are obliged to protect statutory provision discretionary community services are being substantially impacted.
  • In the wards where children’s centre activity provision had been reduced parents reported worsening behavioural problems.  Parents on low incomes were not able to offset those service reductions by paying for private services.
  • Older residents who had experienced changes in local provision reported greater boredom.  In some cases the changes have created  a barrier to access (e.g. inability to pay higher charges) and leaving those older residents more isolated.  Social ties were being severed with service losses.
  •  VCS organisations we spoke with are under increasing pressure, particularly smaller, locally specific ones.  We have to question the long-term potential of VCS provision supplying the antidote to council reductions at the local level given the extent of competition for funding reported.  We have noted here the reduction in all wards of funding to VCS providers of older people’s services and, importantly, the impact of that on older residents’ lives.
  •  This work reflects a snapshot at a particular point in time, just before local elections in 2014 and before a second round of budget cuts.  The situation is likely to get worse.  Several of the service managers we spoke with were unsure of the future of their job or the service they managed.

A summary is available to download here (pdf) and the full report available here

The report is part of the Social Policy in a Cold Climate research programme, jointly funded by Nuffield Foundation, Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Trust for London.

News Posted: 16 October 2014      [Back to the Top]

British Institute of Energy Economics Award
Professor Lord Nicholas Stern awarded the BIEE 10 Year Prize for Outstanding Contribution to British Energy Economics

The British Institute of Energy Economics has awarded a prize for outstanding contribution to British Energy Economics over the last ten years, marking both its thirtieth anniversary and its tenth academic conference, both happening in 2014.

A Prize Committee of energy economists, chaired by Professor Yelena Kalyuzhnova, received nominations in May. The committee was unanimous in recommending that Professor Lord Stern of Brentford should receive the prize. His 2006 Review of the Economics of Climate Change has been the most influential single piece of energy economics published over the last decade, and had important implications for government policy and company strategies. The report is also firmly grounded in the academic literature and has provoked further research into the questions it addresses. Since the publication of his report, Lord Stern has been a very active advocate of the necessity to take action on climate change.

Receiving the award Lord Stern, who is Chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE, said “It’s a tremendous honour to be given this award by the British Institute of Energy Economics. The Institute has played a leading role in public discussion of issues around energy and the economics of energy for a very long time. Indeed I think it has defined in many ways what a serious discussion on those issues should be”.

For further information and for a video of the acceptance speech of Professor Lord Nicholas Stern please visit the British Institute of Energy Economics website.

News Posted: 23 September 2014      [Back to the Top]

Biographical Portrait
Michio Morishima: an economist made in Japan

Professor Janet Hunter has written an insightful biographical piece on STICERD's founder Michio Morishima which will be published as part of the series Britain & Japan: Biographical Portraits (volume 9) by Renaissance Books. The book contains essays from several contributors relating to distinguished personalities who have been influential in political, economic and cultural relations between the two countries.

Michio Morishima was a renowned Japanese economist and mathematician, and according to Professor Hunter, "the closest Japan has yet come to having a Nobel prizewinner in economics". He was Sir John Hicks Professor of Economics at the LSE from 1970–88 and  became an Honorary Fellow in 1991. He received honorary degrees from the universities of Paris (X), Siena and London, as well as emeritus professor status at both Ōsaka University and LSE. In 1976 he was awarded the Bunka Kunshō (Cultural Order of Japan).

Earlier this year, Janet Hunter, who is Saji Professor of Economic History at LSE and STICERD, was honoured by the Japanese gorvernement with the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon for her contribution to Japanese studies and promoting Japan-UK understanding.


News Posted: 10 September 2014      [Back to the Top]

The Economics Times
India has more than its fair share of super-rich and it isn't a good thing

Professor Maitreesh Ghatak, EOPP director, and Professor Debraj Ray from NYU published their analysis on the question of wealth in India. The country, poorer than the world average, has %3 of the world's multimillionaires and %17 of the world's population. The authors try to answer the "real question" of "whether the country has more than its expected share of multimillionaries" by looking at data on wealth distribution in the world. To read this article click here.

News Posted: 04 September 2014      [Back to the Top]

Report Launch:
Facing Debt: Economic Resilience in Newham

On 18th July 2014 the final report was launched from a year long research project conducted by the London School of Economics for the London Borough of Newham into the impact of debt and the experience of life on a low income.
The rising cost of living, stagnant wages and welfare reform have placed many households under increased financial strain. This report, commissioned by the London Borough of Newham and written independently by Professor Anne Power, offers a powerful insight into the lives of some of the hardest pressed people in our country. This research highlights the struggle of both working and non-working households and explores the relationship between financial planning and skills and attitudes to credit and debt. The report also provides a valuable insight into the real impact of welfare reforms and helps to inform Newham’s ongoing work to strengthen resilience.

A panel discussion was held with Polly Toynbee (Guardian), Vidhya Alakeson (Resolution Foundation), Professor Anne Power (LSE) and Sir Robin Wales (Mayor of Newham). The discussion considered the drivers and solutions to increasing levels of personal debt and what can be done locally, nationally and within the community to build economic resilience. The London Borough of Newham also outlined its plans to respond to the analysis in the report.

The full report is available here (pdf). An audio recording of the launch event is also available.

Watch an interview with a Newham resident who took part in the research.

News Posted: 18 July 2014      [Back to the Top]

The Guardian Newspaper
Maitreesh Ghatak: India needs more than Narendra Modi's trickle-down model

EOPP director, Prof Maitreesh Ghatak, has recently published an article in the Guardian (July14th 2014) to comment on Narendra Modi's vision of growth and development. India's PM points to Gujarat as an emblem of economic success. Prof Ghatak points out that despite impressive growth, the state lags behind on welfare. He argues that a trickle-down model will not suffice and that "structural reforms are needed to facilitate growth, make it broad-based, and improve the efficiency and accountability of anti-poverty programmes" To read the article click here.

News Posted: 15 July 2014      [Back to the Top]

Austin Robinson Prize awarded to STICERD academic
Johannes Spinnewijn

At this year's Royal Economic Society Annual Conference, held in Manchester 7-9 April 2014, Johannes Spinnewijn won the 2013 prize for his paper Insurance and Perceptions- How to Screen Optimists and Pessimists. Launched in 2007, this annual prize is awarded for the best non-solicited paper published in The Economic Journal by an author who has completed their PhD in the last five years. The winner is selected by the Editors of the EJ. His presentation is now available to view on YouTube.

Oriana Bandiera was the Programme Chair for the 2014 conference, and the main sessions are available at

News Posted: 07 July 2014      [Back to the Top]

New Book
John Sutton's ''An Enterprise Map of Mozambique''

Mozambique’s economy has grown rapidly in the first decade of the millennium. The key economic question is whether this rate of growth can be sustained. Professor John Sutton and his team of researchers point out that “achieving this will require a substantial advance in the country’s industrial sector”.

Sutton’s Enterprise Map Project, funded by the International Growth Centre (IGC),  aims to provide a standardized   descriptive account of the industrial capabilities of selected countries in sub-Saharan Africa. This is the fifth volume to appear, following volumes on  Ethiopia (2010), Ghana (2011), Tanzania (2012) and Zambia (2013).

News Posted: 04 July 2014      [Back to the Top]

Housing Plus
Think Tank 6: Supporting tenants into work

Housing Plus is about social landlords adopting a wider role in communities where they are based. The bedroom tax, benefit caps and other welfare reforms are having a dramatic impact on the lives of social housing tenants.

This workshop will explore why the problem of work now dominates, why public opinion has become hostile to supporting the unemployed, why social landlords need their tenants to work, and how they can achieve this.  By bringing together social landlords from all over the country who are trying out new ideas or are anxious to uncover more good ideas, we hope to uncover some solutions. Read the Think Tank summary and programme here and fill out the registration form here.

News Posted: 03 July 2014      [Back to the Top]

Order of the Rising Sun Presentation
Janet Hunter honoured at the Japanese Embassy

The Japanese government honoured Professor Janet Hunter of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) with the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon for her contribution to Japanese studies and promoting Japan-UK understanding at a ceremony at the Japanese Ambassador to Britain's residence in London on 17 June 2014. Ambassador Keiichi Hayashi presented the Order, before a toast and a drinks reception hosted by Toyota and Suntory.

Hunter, who is Saji Professor of Economic History at LSE's Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines (STICERD), told The PIE News that she is deeply honoured to receive the decoration. "It was very unexpected and I'm obviously deeply grateful", she said. "To feel you have the approval of colleagues, but particularly people in the country you study, is very, very special.

  More pictures

News Posted: 19 June 2014      [Back to the Top]

STICERD Morishima Lecture
'Capital in the Twenty-First Century' by Thomas Piketty

Date: Monday 16 June 2014 
Time: 6.30-8pm 
Venue: Peacock Theatre, Portugal Street
Speakers: Professor Thomas Piketty (PSE)
Chair: Professor Timothy Besley (LSE)

What are the grand dynamics that drive the accumulation and distribution of capital? Thomas Piketty’s latest findings from his book Capital in the Twenty-First Century will transform debate and set the agenda for the next generation of thought about wealth and inequality.

Thomas Piketty is a professor of economics at the Paris School of Economics and an alumnus of LSE. 

This event is free and open to all however a ticket is required, only one ticket per person can be requested. For more information about ticketing and event details please click HERE

From time to time, there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check back on this listing on the day of the event.

This event will be webcast live on the LSE website on LSE Live

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #LSEcapital

For any queries see LSE Events FAQ or contact us at 0207 955 6043. 

Media queries: please contact the Press Office if you would like to request a press seat or have a media query about this event, email Please note that press seats are usually allocated at least 24 hours before each event.

News Posted: 16 June 2014      [Back to the Top]

New appointment
Tim Besley elected President of the International Economic Association

We are delighted to announce that Tim Besley|, School Professor of Economics and Political Science, Deputy Head of Department for Research, and STICERD associate has been elected President of the International Economic Association|.The IEA, which was founded in 1950, is a federation of most of the World’s major economics associations.  It is currently holding its 17th World Congress in Jordan. 

Tim will replace Joseph Stiglitz, who is stepping down at the end of his 3-year tenure.  Past Presidents of the IEA include Robert Solow, Kenneth Arrow, Amartya Sen and Tony Atkinson.  He is the third UK-based economist to have been elected President of the IEA, and the second from the LSE Department of Economics (the first was Tony Atkinson, who was Tooke Professor of Economic Science and Statistics at the time of his presidency).

News Posted: 13 June 2014      [Back to the Top]

LSE Connect interview with Prof Oriana Bandiera
What makes us tick?

LSE Connect interviews Professor Oriana Bandiera, STICERD's director, about her work on incentives and motivation. Professor Oriana Bandiera designs field experiments to evaluate how individual behaviour is shaped by monetary incentives and social relationships. She explains the ideas behind her work and its implications. To read her interview please click here.

LSE Connect


News Posted: 12 June 2014      [Back to the Top]

Special Seminar in Political Economy
David Baron (Stanford): 'Elections and Durable Governments in Parliamentary Democracies'

We are pleased to announce that Professor David Baron from Stanford University will present a special seminar at STICERD on his latest paper 'Elections and Durable Governments in Parliamentary Democracies'

Date: Monday 9 June 2014 
Time: 4pm-5:30pm 
Venue: 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, STICERD, Third Floor, room 3.05

No reservations are required but spaces are limited.

For enquiries please contact Gisela Lafico

News Posted: 09 June 2014      [Back to the Top]

LSE and BBC Radio 4 Public Debate
Housing: where will we all live?

Date: Monday 9 June 2014 
Time: 6.30-8pm 
Venue: Old Theatre, Old Building
Speakers: Professor Paul Cheshire, Rachel Fisher and others to be announced
Chair: Mark Easton

The governor of the Bank of England recently warned that the overheated housing market represents the "biggest risk" to the country’s long-term recovery.

Mark Carney said rising property prices and the subsequent increase in large-value mortgages, could lead to a "debt overhang" capable of destabilising the economy. He spoke of "deep, deep structural problems" in the market, with demand for homes outstripping supply. In his native Canada, there are half as many people yet twice as many houses are built there every year as in the UK. On average over the past four years fewer market houses have been built than at any time since WW2.

BBC Home Affairs editor Mark Easton asks this expert panel, including LSE’s Paul Cheshire and Rachel Fisher of the National Housing Federation, why this country has failed to build enough affordable homes and looks at what can be done to solve our housing crisis.

The recording will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Wednesday 11 June at 20.02 BST.

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #wheretolive

This event is free and open to all with no ticket or pre-registration required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis. For any queries see LSE Events FAQ or contact us at 0207 955 6043. 

Media queries: please contact the Press Office if you would like to request a press seat or have a media query about this event, email Please note that press seats are usually allocated at least 24 hours before each event.

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check back on this listing on the day of the event

News Posted: 09 June 2014      [Back to the Top]

STICERD to host PEUK Workshop
ESRC Sponsored 2014 Public Economics UK Workshop

We are pleased to announce that the next PEUK Workshop will take place on Friday 30th of May 2014, at STICERD. It is co-organised by the University of Warwick, HMRC and LSE.

Sponsored by the ESRC through CAGE and STICERD - Public Economics Programme (PEP), this workshop will include a mix of academics, HMRC employees, and PhD students, with the goal of providing a space for open discussion about current issues in taxation that can be useful for both policymakers and researchers.

It will run over four hours from 10:15am. To see the programme click here.

For more information please contact Dr Miguel Almunia or Prof Henrik Kleven

Workshop organisers:
  • Miguel Almunia (University of Warwick)

  • Frank Cowell (LSE)

  • Henrik Kleven (LSE)

  • Fahad Sarwar (HMRC)

  • Kimberley Scharf (University of Warwick)

News Posted: 20 May 2014      [Back to the Top]

Japanese Honour for Janet Hunter
Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon

In April Janet Hunter, Saji Professor of Economic History, former Acting Director and Deputy Director of STICERD, was honoured with the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon in recognition of her significant contribution to deepening and developing Japanese Studies and promoting mutual understanding between Japan and the United Kingdom.

Further information here

The Orders of the Rising Sun, established in 1875 by the Emperor Meiji, were Japan's first awards. Professor Ian Nish, a member of the Japanese Studies Programme, and Emeritus Professor of International History, was also awarded this honour in 1991.


News Posted: 29 April 2014      [Back to the Top]

The Huffington Post
When Given the Opportunity, Extreme Poor Take Destiny Into Their Own Hands

Work by STICERD's Oriana Bandiera and Robin Burgess together with colleagues at BRAC has been referred to in a recent article by Tilman Ehrbeck in the Huffington Post. He refers to a presentation by Robin at the Reaching the Poorest Global Learning Event in Paris in February, where he presented their work, "Can Basic Entrepreneurship Transform the Economic Lives of the Poor?" which highlights the success of graduation programmes which have been piloted across various regions and succeeded in transforming the occupational choices of the targeted poor.

News Posted: 24 April 2014      [Back to the Top]

Article by Maitreesh Ghatak in Outlook India
''A Look In The Mirror''

Maitreesh Ghatak and Sanchari Roy hold Gujarat up against other states to see if it grew more in the Modi decade than in the preceding 20 years. The article will be published in the forthcoming Oulook India Magazine on March 31st. The online version can be found here

News Posted: 31 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

LSE Housing and Communities launch new report for HAILO
Work and Welfare Reform: Impacts in the South West 2014

Welfare reforms will prompt many social housing tenants to make fundamental changes around their choice of jobs, housing, and how they manage their money day to day. LSE Housing and Communities has been asked by nine housing associations in the South West of England to understand these changes from a tenant’s point of view.

This is the baseline report of a longitudinal survey commissioned by the South West Housing Association Influence and Leadership Organisation (HAILO). The study aims to monitor the emerging consequences of benefit changes on working age social housing residents as these reforms progress by following 200 social housing tenants across the South West over an extended period of time.

Read the full report here.
News Posted: 25 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

STICERD, Asia Research Centre and Department of Economics Public Lecture
'Why Abenomics Matters: Abenomics and the Japanese economy'

Tuesday 25th March 2014, 6.30pm to 8.00pm, Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House, LSE

Speaker: Motoshige Itoh

Chair: Oriana Bandiera

Japan is highly unusual in having experienced serious deflation in recent years, and Japan’s experience may be regarded as providing a good case study for other industrial countries suffering from inadequate capital investment and what has been termed secular stagnation. This lecture explains the nature of Abenomics introduced by Japan’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, since taking office in December 2012, discussing in particular the impact of aggressive monetary policy and the implications of its growth strategy. The lecture will also touch on issues of fiscal consolidation and social security reform in Japan, which is the most rapidly ageing society in the world.

Professor Motoshige Itoh is a Professor of the Graduate School of Economics, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo. He is the President of the National Institute for Research Advancement, and a member of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy. A graduate of the University of Tokyo, his academic field of specialisation is International Economics. Professor Itoh is closely involved in policy decision-making processes in the Japanese government and writes several columns for newspapers and magazines.

Professor Oriana Bandiera is Director of STICERD and Professor of Economics at LSE.

Additional Information

This event is free and open to all with no ticket required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis. Please direct any queries to| or call 020 7955 7615.

News Posted: 25 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

Book Launch, 27 March 2014
Changing Inequalities and Societal Impacts in Rich Countries: Thirty Countries' Experiences

An audio recording of the launch event can be found here

cover Increasing inequalities across some of the richest countries in the world are not inevitable according to findings from an international research project, which included a team of researchers from LSE. Published in two volumes, launched at LSE on 27 March 2014, the research shows that public policy plays a key role in shaping national inequalities even within a highly globalized set of rich countries. Information on inequality trends was gathered across 30 countries over the last 30 years.

Evidence of tax reforms across many of the countries reveals a trend towards lowering marginal tax rates for high earners, reductions in taxes on capital and capital income and removal or reductions in inheritance tax. This has been coupled with a reduction in the effectiveness of welfare states in ameliorating background inequality pressures.  This is despite attitudinal data which reveals that people in these countries expressed a dislike for inequality in their societies and believed that governments should do more to redistribute income or increase spending on programmes to enhance opportunity.   

The research also found that increases in inequalities have been accompanied by falling political participation with fewer people voting in political elections or actively engaging in politics, with much greater falls occurring among the least advantaged members of societies than the more privileged. 

Dr Abigail McKnight, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion| (CASE) at LSE, said: “Concern has been growing about increases in concentration of income and wealth among a small group of people and the relationship between this group and an emerging privileged political elite. This new evidence on inequality trends, political participation and evolving public policy is a concern for all democracies. The danger is that disenfranchised groups are left open to being drawn in by emerging minority political parties expressing narrow populist views
“In the UK we found that, over the period, voter turnout in UK general elections fell. The gap between voters in the Professional social class and those in the Unskilled social class widened from 10 percentage points in 1992 to 25 percentage points in 2005 with a similar gap found in the 2010 general election.”

Within the group of countries studied there were examples of stable income inequality, including Belgium and Southern European countries. Even though the general trend was upwards, the timing of increases was variable and in some countries there were even periods where inequality fell.
The central and eastern European countries –  transforming from Soviet-led economies to free market economies –  tended to experience large increases in inequality but some navigated the path better than others. This partly reflects the diverse nature of this group of countries and the role of public policy. These countries appear to have polarised into a relatively high inequality grouping (including Latvia, Bulgaria and Lithuania) and a relatively low inequality grouping (including Slovenia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic).

The research also examined evidence on the impact of inequality on a wide variety of social, cultural and political factors. Some previous research has suggested that inequality is associated with a range of ‘social ills’. Here the evidence was more mixed and while some areas seem to show a clear relationship with inequality –  for example, political engagement, attitudes, some types of crime and imprisonment – this was not evident in others, for example, marriage and divorce, economic stress, life expectancy, overall crime rates. Individuals’ outcomes were often found to be more strongly influenced by wider social change, such as family configuration, and technological advances, such as health and crime, and policy played an important role in weakening the link between inequality, opportunity and outcomes. What did emerge was that in a number of areas income inequality cast a shadow by increasing social gradients (the gaps between the least and most advantaged) in, for example, political engagement, health and social mobility.

The project ‘Growing Inequalities’ Impacts’| (GINI) was funded through the EU FP7 research programme (February 2010 – July 2013)  . The London School of Economics was one of six core country partners (Belgium, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, UK) led by Wiemer Salverda at the University of Amsterdam. This study involved over 200 researchers and analysed data for 30 countries (all 27 EU countries except Malta and Cyprus plus Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea and the US) covering a period of over 30 years. The project produced country reports covering all 30 countries, around 100 discussion papers, policy papers, reviews and reports, all of which contributed to the two OUP volumes.

Changing Inequalities in Rich Countries: Analytical and Comparative Perspectives| Editors: Wiemer Salverda, Brian Nolan, Daniele Checchi, Ive Marx, Abigail McKnight, István György Tóth and Herman van de Werfhorst, Oxford University Press

Changing Inequalities and Societal Impacts in Rich Countries: Thirty Countries' Experiences|
Editors: Brian Nolan, Wiemer Salverda, Daniele Checchi, Ive Marx, Abigail McKnight, István György Tóth and Herman van de Werfhorst, Oxford University Press 

To mark the launch, Oxford University Press have agreed to offer a 30% discount on book sales at the event or ordered online (details here).



News Posted: 19 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

Book Launch
All that is Solid: The Great Housing Disaster by Danny Dorling

Tuesday 18th March 2014, 6.30-8.00pm
A ground-breaking examination of the UK’s dangerous relationship with the housing market, and how easily it could, will, come crashing down

From “generation rent” to rising homelessness, the government’s Help to Buy scheme to the proposed “mansion tax”, and negative equity to the recent sell-off of a London council house for £3million, housing is the one issue that affects us all.
Housing was at the heart of the financial collapse, and in this ground-breaking new book, Danny Dorling argues that housing is the defining issue of our times.
Tracing how we got to our current crisis and how housing has come to reflect class and wealth in Britain, All That Is Solid radically shows that the solution to our problems - rising homelessness, a generation priced out of home ownership - is not, as is widely assumed, building more homes. Inequality, he argues, is what we really need to overcome.
Danny Dorling, Halford Mackinder Professor in Geography at the University of Oxford, will launch his new book All that is Solid: The Great Housing Disaster in a joint LSE Housing and Communities and CASE event at LSE on Tuesday 18th March (6.30-8.00pm) in TW1.G.01, Ground Floor, Tower One, Clements Passage, London WC2A 2AZ. This event is free but booking is essential. To request a seat for this event, please email or telephone 020 7955 6330.

“Dorling is that rare university professor: expert, politically engaged and able to explain simply why his subject matters. He describes modern Britain as the most unequal society since Dickens's times, and picks apart the orthodoxies that allow such unfairness.”                                                                     
Martin Wainwright, the Guardian

Danny Dorling: All that is Solid: The Great Housing Disaster
London: Allen Lane
Hardback £20.00 ISBN 9781846147159
E-book also available
Published on 27th February 2014
To order this book please see:

News Posted: 18 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

Article by Maitreesh Ghatak
Modinomics: do Narendra Modi's economic claims add up?

Maitreesh Ghatak and Sanchari Roy comment on the economic record of Narendra Modi, the BJP prime ministerial candiate in the forthcoming Indian elections in the Guardian Comment is Free online. A further article by Maitreesh can be found in The Economic Times.

News Posted: 14 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

Wall Street Journal
Do CEOs of Family-Owned Businesses Work Less?

What's the difference between a family firm and a regular business? According to one new study, an empty corner office.

Professors at Harvard Business School, the London School of Economics and Columbia University's business school examined the schedules of 356 chief executives in India and found that family CEOs worked 8% fewer hours than managers without genetic ties to their companies. The researchers found similar disparities in Brazil, Britain, France, Germany, Italy and the U.S.

This article was published by The Wall Street Journal on 4 March 2014. Link to full article

Related publications:

Managing the Family Firm: Evidence from CEOs at Work? by Oriana Bandiera (LSE) Andrea Prat (Columbia) Raffaella Sadun (HBS).

News Posted: 05 March 2014      [Back to the Top]

CASE Book Launch
An Equal Start? Providing Quality Early Education and Care for Disadvantaged Children

Wednesday 19th February 2014 4.30pm - 6.00pm followed by an informal reception

London School of Economics, Room 1.04. 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, WC2A 3PH (Map and directions)

Presentations from the editors Ludovica Gambaro and Kitty Stewart. Jane Waldfogel will join via video link.


  • Vidhya Alakeson, Resolution Foundation
  • Leon Feinstein, Early Intervention Foundation.


  • Howard Glennerster, Emeritus Professor, LSE

This presentation marks the launch of the book 'An Equal Start? Providing Quality Early Education and Care for Disadvantaged Children', published by Policy Press, edited by Ludovica Gambaro, Kitty Stewart and Jane Waldfogel. The book examines how the UK and seven other OECD countries manage the provision of early education and care, and focuses in particular on the way that funding and regulation mechanisms operate to ensure that disadvantaged children access high quality provision. The study looks at countries where the private and voluntary sectors are involved in delivery of early education and care and asks whether experience elsewhere offers potential lessons for the UK. The countries included are: Australia, France, Germany, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Norway, and the US.

This work was part of a larger project generously funded by the Nuffield Foundation and carried out in conjunction with Daycare Trust (now Family and Childcare Trust)

To book a place please click here
News Posted: 19 February 2014      [Back to the Top]

GINI project
Publication of research findings

Changing Inequalities and Societal Impacts in Rich Countries

Edited by Wiemer Salverda, Brian Nolan, Daniele Checchi, Ive Marx, Abigail McKnight, István György Tóth, and Herman G. van de Werfhorst

The GINI project reached its conclusion following three and a half years of collaborative research into changing inequalities in 30 countries. The project looks at the long-term impacts of inequalities on social, political, cultural and economic aspects of life Two volumes based on the findings have just been published by Oxford University Press. Details of the launch event to follow soon. Further information can be found on the The GINI website

Volume one: Changing Inequalities in Rich Countries: Analytical and Comparative Perspectives

This volume investigates inequality trends in income, wealth, education, and the labour market, providing detailed information on inequality experiences across 30 countries examining trends over 30 years.  The research combines statistically sophisticated comparative analysis with evidence from individual countries' experiences to examine the relationship between changes in inequality and societal, cultural and political outcomes. This is followed by an assessment of the policy response across countries.


Volume two: Changing Inequalities and Societal Impacts in Rich Countries: Thirty Countries' Experiences

The second volume applies a consistent analytical framework across 30 different countries examining trends over 30 years, providing detailed background and information about inequality experiences and impacts in individual countries.  These case-studies bring out the variety of country experiences and the importance of framing inequality trends in the institutional and policy context of each country.

News Posted: 12 February 2014      [Back to the Top]

LSE and Trafford Hall Housing Plus Think Tank:
Welfare Reform and Tenants' Experiences

Monday 3rd – Tuesday 4th March 2014

Trafford Hall, near Chester

Housing Plus is about social landlords adopting a wider role in communities where they are based. The bedroom tax, benefit caps and other welfare reforms are having a dramatic impact on the lives of social housing tenants, particularly those under 60. Landlords face big challenges in helping their tenants and collecting rents which pay for housing services.

This is the second special Think Tank for social housing tenants and it is important for tenant voices to be heard, and their experiences are shared. We want to gather real evidence from the ground and share it widely. We are interested in discovering who are the most vulnerable and worst affected tenants, whether there is more that can be done, whether landlords are developing better access routes and more support for tenants as a result of the pressures of welfare reform, and also whether welfare reform is being properly connected to work and job opportunities.

Download (pdf)

The full event programme

News Posted: 07 February 2014      [Back to the Top]

Harvard Business School: Working Knowledge
Family CEOs Spend Less Time at Work

Two years ago, the World Management Survey on organizational leadership reported that firms led by family CEOs (managers related to the family owning the business) are often managed badly, particularly those where a first-born son has inherited the role of CEO from the previous leader.

Now comes additional research showing that on average, family CEOs also work significantly fewer hours per week than other (nonfamily affiliated) CEOs. It's an important finding because longer working hours are associated with higher firm productivity and growth, says Raffaella Sadun, an assistant professor in the Strategy unit at Harvard Business School who studies the curious relationship between managerial incentives and motivation.

This article was published by Harvard Business School Working Knowledge on 27 January 2014. Link to full article

Related publications:

Managing the Family Firm: Evidence from CEOs at Work? by Oriana Bandiera (LSE) Andrea Prat (Columbia) Raffaella Sadun (HBS).

News Posted: 27 January 2014      [Back to the Top]

Social Policy in a Cold Climate Event -
Education Policy, Equity and Social Mobility - last few places available to book

Date: Thursday 23rd January 2014, 2.00pm to 5.00pm

Venue: London School of Economics, Old Building room OLD3.21

Suggested Twitter hashtag #EdSocMob

The programme is available here

All major political parties are now committed to reducing educational inequalities. What can they really hope to achieve, and how? To what extent will closing educational attainment gaps in schools contribute to greater social mobility in the future?

This event will present findings from three important research studies by leading education economists and sociologists, followed by comments from policy-makers and practitioners and a debate from the floor. The event is free and open to all, early booking is recommended.


  • Geoff Whitty (Institute of Education) and Jake Anders
    (Institute of Education)
    (How) did New Labour narrow the achievement and participation gap?

  • Claire Crawford (Institute for Fiscal Studies) Socio-economic gaps in HE participation and outcomes

  • Jo Blanden (University of Surrey) and Lindsey Macmillan (Institute of Education)
    Education and Intergenerational Mobility: Help or Hindrance?


  • Tessa Stone, The Brightside Trust
  • Sir Alan Steer, Retired secondary head and government adviser 2004-10
  • Graeme Cooke, IPPR

This event is now fully booked.

Presentations and papers from this event are available here

News Posted: 23 January 2014      [Back to the Top]