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St Catharine's Political Economy Seminar Series - 'Industrial Policy in the UK' Diane Coyle

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Date: Wednesday 6 March 2019 Time: 18:00 -19:30 Speaker: Terry Barker Talk Title:‘Trade and Development: Why a ‘No Deal’ Brexit Would be an Economic Catastrophe’ Location: Ramsden Room, St Catharine’s College

Speaker Diane Coyle was previously Professor of Economics at the University of Manchester and has held a number of public service roles including Vice Chair of the BBC Trust (2006-2014), member of the Competition Commission (2001-2009), and member of the Migration Advisory Committee (2009-2014). Diane Coyle is currently a member of the Natural Capital Committee, an expert adviser to the National Infrastructure Commission and a member of the Council of Economic Advisers. Diane Coyle was awarded a CBE for her contribution to the public understanding of economics in the 2018 New Year Honours. Diane Coyle is heading research in the fields of public policy economics, technology, industrial strategy and global inequality. Diane Coyle is currently the Bennett Professor of Public Policy, and Fellow of Churchill College, University of Cambridge.

Talk Overview: The disparity between the least and most productive regions in the UK is wide by the standards of many other OECD economies. While there are many contributory factors to the poor economic outcomes of many UK regions, this paper argues that the concentration of public investment is in and around London and the South East. The appraisal process for infrastructure investment projects follows the methodological set out in the Treasury’s Green Book, with major funding allocation decisions almost wholly centralised. In this paper, Diane Coyle argues that this methodology has reinforced the regional imbalance of the UK economy; that recent changes to the appraisal methods are welcome but unlikely by themselves to redress the London bias in infrastructure decisions; and that although evidence-based appraisal is important, infrastructure investments also need to be based on a strategic view about economic development for the whole of the UK.

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This talk is part of the St Catharine's Political Economy Seminar Series series.

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