Category archives for Politics and policy

The world as we know it is a world that never was

Craig Berry

Donald Trump’s election reminds us that world order is based on American imperial power, not liberal ideals – the American empire’s unravelling will now be accelerated There has been much anxiety expressed in recent days on what the election of Donald Trump in the United States, on the back of the Brexit vote in Britain, says about ‘us’ (whether the … Continue reading

7 December 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, USA | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The CBI, British business and employment rights after Brexit

Scott Lavery

Brexit undermines the CBI’s EU engagement strategy. British business now faces a dilemma about how to influence social and employment policy In the run-up to the EU referendum, both the trade unions and the Labour leadership warned that Brexit could lead to an attack on a range of employment rights underpinned by EU legislation.  This argument was generally made with … Continue reading

4 October 2016 by
Categories: Europe and the EU, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Corbynism, martyrdom and the other Labour split – part II

Craig Berry

Labour will not split, but Corbynism might – Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party depends on a large group of activists increasingly uneasy with his approach to politics Part I of this post explored the phenomenon of Corbynism in relation to political ‘martyrdom’, arguing that Jeremy Corbyn and his key allies offer a destructive form of utopian politics.  Suddenly … Continue reading

3 October 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Growth and degradation in UK apparel manufacturing

Low paid, precarious and informal employment is commonplace in a sector shaped by new regulatory regimes and global manufacturing trends How is it that wages in the apparel manufacturing sector in the UK have been pushed well below the national minimum wage, and basic work and employment standards are frequently violated? Even in one of the industries most exposed to … Continue reading

9 August 2016 by
Categories: Employment, Politics and policy, Rethinking Recovery, SPERI Comment | Tags: | Leave a comment

After Brexit where next for UK employment rights?

Jason Heyes

The new Conservative government could rewrite employment rights, what happens now will depend on whether pragmatism or ideology prevails The potential consequences of Brexit for UK employment rights was a prominent issue in the debate that preceded the referendum.  Many employment entitlements are underpinned by European directives that establish a basic floor of rights for all EU and EEA member … Continue reading

14 July 2016 by
Categories: Employment, Europe and the EU, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Resisting Labour Reforms in France

Heather Connolly

The current industrial action will test the ‘reactionary radicalism’ of French unions and the Government’s ability to introduce reforms On 4th November 2015, France’s labour minister, Myriam El Khomri, launched reforms designed to rewrite the labour code.  France’s labour code is more than 3,500 pages long in its latest edition, plus vast amounts of supplementary case law.  This fact makes … Continue reading

16 June 2016 by
Categories: Employment, Europe and the EU, Politics and policy, Social science, SPERI Comment, Trade Unions | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Authoritarian but Flexible: Turkey and recent labour market reforms

Mehmet

The AKP’s reforms to ‘flexibilise’ the labour market will weaken workers’ rights and further consolidate authoritarian neoliberalism in Turkey In the last few years, ‘authoritarianism’ has been used widely by mainstream academic circles, Western media and international civil society organisations to define the character of the political regime under the AKP (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi or the Justice and Development … Continue reading

7 June 2016 by
Categories: Economics, Employment, Europe and the EU, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Democratic primaries in the shadow of neoliberalism

David Coates

The Clinton/Sanders battle exposes the challenge of the centre-left to overcome its pre-crisis accommodation with neoliberalism One way of grasping what is now at stake in the on-going battle between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders is to set that clash in the shadow of the Reagan/Thatcher neoliberal revolution of the 1980s. That revolution kept Democrats out of the White House, … Continue reading

2 June 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Tax, USA | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

The Coming Crisis: systemic stabilization and the investment state

A new ‘investment state’ is needed to provide stability in the new uncertain political economy of shadow money, financial instability and demand deficiency We live in an era characterised by a confusing evolutionary dynamic relationship between financial innovation, the state and patterns of investment that we barely understand. At the core of this conundrum is the little understood issue of … Continue reading

18 May 2016 by
Categories: British growth crisis, Finance, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Sustainability, The coming crisis | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Coming Crisis: secular stagnation for the UK?

Jonathan Perraton

Current economic trends suggest the UK may need to be prepared for a period of weak, and potentially zero economic growth It is now almost eight years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers heralded the global financial crisis (GFC), roughly the length of a normal business cycle. Over that time interest rates have been held at record low levels and … Continue reading

11 May 2016 by
Categories: Austerity, British growth crisis, Economics, Finance, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, The coming crisis, USA | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Brazil on the edge: rhetoric and reality in Rousseff’s impeachment proceedings

Giselle Datz

Despite claims of a coup, Brazilian democracy has proved more resilient so far than the country’s crumbling economy On Sunday evening (April 17), more than 71% of Brazilian representatives in the lower house of Congress voted to impeach President Dilma Rousseff (in office since 2011). With more than the necessary 69% of votes guaranteed, the process now moves to the … Continue reading

22 April 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Sustainability | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It’s not about tax evasion or avoidance, it’s about inequality

Focusing on politicians’ tax affairs misses the real point: the Panama Papers expose deep structural inequalities and their consequences The recent political stramash over the Mossack Fonseca revelations has involved endless media interviews, commentaries and expert pronouncements about whether David Cameron’s family had engaged in and benefited from sensible tax efficient investment strategies or from dubious tax evasion. This is … Continue reading

19 April 2016 by
Categories: Europe and the EU, Finance, Inequality, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Tax, USA | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 comment

What is money for?

To meet collective societal challenges, and to respond to future recessions, a different way of thinking about money is required One particular exchange from the inaugural SPERI conference in 2012 has always stuck in my mind. After Colin Hay’s opening address, Bob Jessop asked him, ‘what is your theory of money?’ At the time I thought this was distractingly abstract, … Continue reading

5 April 2016 by
Categories: British growth crisis, Economics, Finance, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

‘I want to take you to China…’ Culture at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse

Manchester’s cultural and sporting brand is increasingly important in attracting global investment to the city Much of the discussion about ‘DevoManc’, or the Northern Powerhouse agenda, has so far overlooked one important element. The significance of the role of popular culture in shaping and enhancing the profile of Manchester as a global city – and thus enhancing the argument for … Continue reading

31 March 2016 by
Categories: China, Devolution, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How does low access to finance affect innovation?

A major new study highlights the barriers to innovation that face firms from across Europe There is ample evidence in the economics literature that achieving sustained long-term productivity and economic growth is intrinsically linked to investment in research and development (R&D) and innovation activity (i.e. through the introduction of new or significantly improved goods and services). However, due to the … Continue reading

24 March 2016 by
Categories: Europe and the EU, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Plotting against the NHS

Tony Payne

A closely interconnected health policy community in Britain has grabbed control of the agenda and seeks to make further marketisation of healthcare the only possible option Earlier in the year I was admitted to hospital for an operation and so I necessarily engaged with the NHS more intensively than at any other point in my lifetime. Don’t worry, though, dear … Continue reading

23 March 2016 by
Categories: Economics, Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Tony Payne | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Re-framing the funding crisis in adult residential care

New ‘follow the money’ research investigates where the money paid to financialised care home chains goes In recent months large care home chains have told a story through the media of an imminent crisis in adult residential care. They say the increase to the minimum wage (to be introduced on April 1st 2016) and underpayment by local authorities for care … Continue reading

22 March 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Tax | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Talking the politics of welfare

Liam Stanley

More and more evidence shows that it matters considerably that British governments have lately been deploying the word ‘welfare’ in an official capacity Imagine you are a government minister or a particularly influential civil servant.  Lucky you: you are introducing some new legislation that, say, proposes that all benefit claimants must attend interviews within three days of making their first … Continue reading

16 March 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment, Tax, Welfare | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Why Labour is losing: a response to O’Hara and Pye

Corbyn’s ascendance has compounded Labour’s electoral difficulties, but it didn’t create the problem In their recent posts for SPERI Glen O’Hara and Robbie Pye articulate the reasons why the Labour Party currently appears suspended between optimism and despair.  O’Hara makes powerful use of historical polling data to reveal why Labour’s position as an opposition party currently appears weak.  A prospective … Continue reading

15 March 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, SPERI Comment | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

From Cradle to the Grave? The decline of UK funeral policy provision

Liam Foster

The Conservative Government will face considerable challenges as people are unable to meet rising funeral costs While much is known about the ritual components of a funeral, very little is known about how individuals and families determine and plan for the financial costs associated with a funeral, and how they afford them. While funeral costs can be a potential source … Continue reading

8 March 2016 by
Categories: Politics and policy, Social science, SPERI Comment, Tax, Welfare | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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