Month: August 2014

Tax off for good behaviour

Over the weekend the CIH and the Resolution Foundation released a useful briefing called More than a roof. The focus is largely on the way in which financial incentives could be used to improve standards in the private rented sector. The briefing provides a brief overview of the […]

The value of planning

Earlier this month there was a small flurry of comment in the media about the impact of planning on house prices (for example, here). The question was why house prices in Britain have grown faster than most other countries over the last forty years. A big chunk of […]

Shredded, the RBS saga and banking reform

I’ve just finishing reading Ian Fraser’s Shredded. I started it when I was up in Edinburgh last month, appropriately enough. But other things intervened and it was only over the bank holiday weekend that I got the time to sit down and read the second half. The book tells […]

The miraculous power of welfare reform

The international news is pretty grim at the moment. This doesn’t really fit well with the traditional idea that we’re in silly season, when Prime Ministers travel to holiday destinations to point at fish. Yet something that fits entirely comfortably with silly season is another self-justificatory speech by […]

Borismania

I can sort of see the appeal. But, then again, I really can’t. Is Boris the saviour of the Conservative party? Back at the beginning of last year I saw him give an after dinner speech. At one point he was stood within two metres of me, but […]

Academic economics, institutions and incentives

An interesting discussion about academic economics and its role in public life has sparked into life while I’ve been away (eg Simon here and here; Chris here and here). This discussion touches on many of the things that are closest to my academic interests – in particular, thinking about economics as a set […]