Friday , October 18 2019
Home / neweconomics

neweconomics



Articles by neweconomics

Top 15% of taxpayers should fill NHS funding gap, think tank suggests

June 18, 2018

New Economics Foundation (NEF) proposes levying £11.1bn for NHS through reform to National Insurance Contributions (NICs)
By abolishing the Upper Earnings Limit on NICs, top 15% of taxpayers will pay their fair share for our health system
NEF calls for increased investment in preventative measures to ensure a more efficient health system in the future
The New Economics Foundation (NEF) today proposes a radical, progressive tax change to contribute more than half of the £20bn earmarked for the NHS by the Government by 2023.
Abolishing the Upper Earnings Limit of employee National Insurance Contributions (NICs) would raise £11.1bn per year by 2023/24, in today’s prices – more than half of the £20bn the government has

Read More »

Weekly Economics Podcast: One year on from the Grenfell Tower fire

June 18, 2018

The fire at Grenfell Tower a year ago last week was, above all, a tragedy for its residents, their friends, and their families. It’s also come to symbolise a deeper crisis in British society – at least in the eyes of many people.
On this week’s podcast, we’re giving you an update on what we’ve learned since that night; what the inquiry has heard; and the shifting national conversation about Grenfell.
Ayeisha Thomas-Smith speaks to Luke Barratt, business reporter at Inside Housing, and Katya Nasim, a campaigner with the Radical Housing Network.
[embedded

Read More »

Take back technology

June 14, 2018

Think about our average working day. How many of your interactions and encounters are mediated by technology? From email, to Skype, to Slack, it’s hard to imagine work being possible without the range of tools provided by our computers and smartphones. While this has brought about amazing benefits, it is also changing how power and accountability between workers and firms is configured. As part of the first phase of an 18-month project into the gig economy, we mapped the ways in which technology is changing the nature of work. Here are some of our key findings.
Technology is extending the scale of workplace

Read More »

Who watches the workers?

June 14, 2018

A new economy is emerging. And this new economy is powered by a new type of fuel: data. As the data economy becomes increasingly prominent, there are troubling signs that it is worsening existing power imbalances, and creating new problems of domination and lack of accountability. But it would be wrong simply to draw dystopian visions from our current situation. Technological change does not determine social change, and there is a whole range of potential

Read More »

Weekly Economics Podcast: Does the Windrush scandal signal the end of Britain’s ‘hostile environment’?

June 11, 2018

Papers destroyed by the Home Office. Forced out of work. Denied cancer treatment. Held in detention. Deported. Those are just a few of the terrible stories we’ve heard about the treatment of the Windrush generation over the past few months.
We’ve had a change of Home Secretary, but will there be a change in policy? The government set up a ‘Windrush taskforce’ in April – but will it right these wrongs? And what does the ‘hostile environment’ policy say about the UK’s difficult relationship with its own history?
This week, Ayeisha Thomas-Smith is joined by Omar

Read More »

NEF in the news, June 2018

June 6, 2018

Thousands of small businesses facing closure as Network Rail sells off arches
We are supporting companies based in railway arches, who are experiencing massive rent increases ahead of sale to a private investor. The campaign has been covered widely, including on Sky News.
Central banks can lead in disclosure of climate risks
Our letter, signed by more than 50 NGOs, appeared in The Financial Times. The letter calls for central banks to lead by example when it comes to financial transparency over the risks and implications of climate change.
It’s time to end the debt trap ensnaring Britain’s poorest
Hanna Wheatley wrote for HuffPost about why we need to end the low wages, precarious work, and punishingly high rents that

Read More »

Central banks should lead by example on transparency and climate change

June 5, 2018

In a letter drawn up by the New Economics Foundation, more than 50 NGOs, including Greenpeace, Finance Watch, Transparency International, and Share Action, have called on central banks to lead by example when it comes to financial transparency over the risks and implications of climate change.  
The letter notes that G20 central banks and finance ministries have made commendable steps by putting climate change firmly on the financial stability agenda. As Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney has suggested, the severity of climate risks could result in a

Read More »

Railway arch sell-off threatens thousands of small businesses

June 1, 2018

Railway arches will mean different things to different people. Some will remember the local garage where they’ve got their MOT done for decades. Others will think of a bakery or café that’s recently set up shop in an arch and which they’ve come to love. Or if they’re Londoners of a certain age, perhaps they might dimly remember a night out in King’s Cross.
Businesses in railway arches are a largely urban thing, so perhaps they cannot quite lay claim to being universally treasured. But within the city, they come close. Arches are places where a huge variety of

Read More »

Out of Contract

May 31, 2018

Public managers and elected members have extensive experience of procuring goods and
services and contracting for supply from private firms and charities.
But, say  you are the new town or county hall leader. New councillors will be asking: do we have an accurate map of council functions, coloured by who carries them out?
If it ever was, competitive contracting for public services can no longer be the default. Awareness of the risk in handing over public business to firms has grown. Major contracting companies

Read More »

Deliveroo workers fight for justice

May 31, 2018

In recent months, gig economy companies, under fire from unions, have been forced to improve their treatment of workers. DPD now pays at least £8.75 an hour and has abandoned its £150 charge for being absent from work. This follows the death of Don Lane, a delivery driver so terrified of the charge that he avoided hospital appointments and died from his illness. Meanwhile, Deliveroo recently offered its

Read More »

End the Debt Trap campaign call for cost cap imposed on payday lenders be extended to all forms of consumer credit

May 31, 2018

Responding to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)’s review on high cost credit the End the Debt Trap campaign, supported by the New Economics Foundation, say the proposals set out today will not solve the deep, systemic and growing problem of household debt in the UK.
The End the Debt Trap campaign is now calling for Parliament to intervene and force the FCA to extend the cost cap imposed on payday lenders in 2015 to all forms of consumer credit.
The End the Debt Trap campaign is a new coalition of organisations formed to put an end to the debt trap in which many people find themselves caught. Despite some positive steps forward, the FCA’s review on high cost credit will not End the Debt Trap says the coalition,

Read More »

The rise of the data oligarchs

May 25, 2018

A new economy is emerging. And this new economy is powered by a new type of fuel: data. As the data economy becomes increasingly prominent, there are troubling signs that it is worsening existing power imbalances, and creating new problems of domination and lack of accountability. But it would be wrong simply to draw dystopian visions from our current situation. Technological change does not determine social change, and there is a whole range of potential futures – both emancipatory and discriminatory – open to us. We must decide for ourselves which one we

Read More »

Inspiring alternatives to our broken housing system

May 18, 2018

The UK is suffering from a housing crisis, and Birmingham is no exception. Only 16% of houses built in the city in 2016-17 were affordable, and gentrification is spreading across the city rapidly. But across Birmingham, groups, individuals and communities have come together to challenge Birmingham’s broken housing system, and develop alternatives together. We held an event showcasing some of the most exciting housing groups in the city today, and asked them to share their alternatives.

The event was also an opportunity to launch our new guide, How to make the

Read More »

Stress and anxiety related hospital admissions costing taxpayer £71.1m

May 18, 2018

New analysis from the New Economics Foundation shows how elements of our economy are causing increased stress and therefore increasing cost to and strain on the NHS. The analysis finds that there were 17,500 episodes where stress or anxiety was the primary cause for hospital admission and shows that this led to 165,800 days where beds were occupied due to stress or anxiety, at a cost to the taxpayer of £71.1 million.

Further analysis shows that:
Housing and stress: As Shelter has found one in five English adults surveyed said a housing issue had negatively impacted upon their mental health in the last five years, and one in 20 said they had gone to their GP in the last five years with a stress-related housing issue.

Read More »

Stressed economy, stressed society, stressed NHS

May 18, 2018

The UK is facing a mental health crisis and it is largely due to our broken economic system. Almost three quarters of people (74%) felt at some point last year they were so stressed that they were unable to cope, and a third of people in Britain have experienced suicidal feelings.
The New Economics Foundation has analysed hospital admission data from 2016/2017 and found that there were 17,500 episodes where stress or anxiety was the primary cause for hospital admission. This led to 165,800 days where beds were occupied due to stress or anxiety, at a cost to the

Read More »

Participation in a populist age

May 17, 2018

EVENT: Central Hall Westminster, 1:30pm-5:00pm, Monday 21 May
Many agree that politics has entered a populist phase. But what are the implications for the health of our democracy, and for activists and campaigners working for change within the traditional democratic process?
This isn’t just about Brexit and Trump. Established parties all over Europe and beyond have been shifted by populist politics. New parties and leaders have emerged to take centre stage.
One consequence of this is an apparent increase in engagement with politics, particularly among groups who were previously disengaged. It all seems a long way from the state of play 10 or 15 years ago, when voter turnout and party membership numbers told a story of

Read More »

Measuring wellbeing inequality

May 17, 2018

Policy makers and academics are increasingly interested in wellbeing inequality. The vast majority of academic studies into wellbeing inequality currently use standard deviation of personal wellbeing measures such as self-reported life satisfaction or happiness. However, there has so far only been limited debate on whether standard deviation is the most appropriate measure, and its choice is rarely justified.
This working paper presents research commissioned by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and carried out by the New Economics Foundation (NEF) in

Read More »

Introducing…wellbeing inequality

May 17, 2018

If there’s one thing that we learned from the political turmoil of the past few years it’s that people have woken up to the failings of our old economic model.
The splintering of the electoral map– with the success of UKIP, the Green surge, the SNP and Corbyn inside the Labour party – is testament to a widespread rejection of business as usual.
When the Remain campaign lined up every establishment political figure and economic expert they could find to argue that a vote to leave the European Union would fundamentally threaten our current economic system, 51% of

Read More »

How to make the case for community-led housing on public land

May 10, 2018

This guide is designed to help groups looking to build community-led, affordable housing development in their area overcome one of their greatest obstacles: acquiring land. Surplus public land provides a resource which could kickstart community-led, affordable development, but all too often it is sold to the highest bidder, not community groups.
We have developed this guide to help groups on their journey to securing public land for community benefit. In the sections below you will find information on existing housing development legislation, competing with private developers, and building an evidence base for community-led housing that is both affordable and protects public assets.
Community-led, affordable housing –

Read More »

Making the case: 1. The context

May 10, 2018

This chapter is part of our guide to making the case for community-led housing on public land.
Making the case: an introduction1. The context: legislation and regulations2. Addressing the ‘best consideration’ requirement – and winning3. Case studies4. Building an evidence base5. Backing up your arguments
How do public sector bodies sell land? And what does this mean for community groups? This section introduces the relevant rules and regulations, and shows how the legislation often leads to the sale of land to the highest bidder, not to those groups aiming to maximise community benefit.
What does ‘best consideration’ mean?
When public sector bodies are making decisions about selling public land, they are subject to

Read More »

Making the case: 2. Addressing ‘best consideration’

May 10, 2018

This chapter is part of our guide to making the case for community-led housing on public land.
Making the case1. The context: legislation and regulations2. Addressing the ‘best consideration’ requirement – and winning3. Case studies4. Building an evidence base5. Backing up your arguments
The ‘best consideration’ requirement can seem like a huge barrier to community-led housing. But this section introduces existing options within the current legislation for community groups to access land for affordable housing. It also outlines some key campaign goals which would make this process much easier for community-led housing groups.
Although the incentives underpinning the public land sale policy mean that advocates of

Read More »

Making the case: 3. Case studies

May 10, 2018

This chapter is part of our guide to making the case for community-led housing on public land.
Making the case1. The context: legislation and regulations2. Addressing the ‘best consideration’ requirement – and winning3. Case studies4. Building an evidence base5. Backing up your arguments
This section provides case studies which show how ‘best value’ stunts affordable housing developments, and how it can be challenged
1. Transport for London (TfL)
When Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, introduced his policy of using the revised London Plan to ensure that 50% of all new homes developed in London are affordable, he found himself up against the ‘best consideration’ requirement. Prioritising affordable housing on TfL land

Read More »

Making the case: 4. Building an evidence base

May 10, 2018

This chapter is part of our guide to making the case for community-led housing on public land.
Making the case1. The context: legislation and regulations2. Addressing the ‘best consideration’ requirement – and winning3. Case studies4. Building an evidence base5. Backing up your arguments
This section outlines steps groups need to take to make the case that community-led affordable housing schemes generate economic and social value, in order to convince public authorities to enable schemes on public land. It provides an outline of a possible approach, and signposts to existing resources.
The information in this section is based on a review of in-depth work done by the Housing Association Charitable Trust (HACT) since

Read More »

Making the case: 5. Backing up your arguments

May 10, 2018

This chapter is part of our guide to making the case for community-led housing on public land.
Making the case1. The context: legislation and regulations2. Addressing the ‘best consideration’ requirement – and winning3. Case studies4. Building an evidence base5. Backing up your arguments
This section provides a helpful summary of the existing research and studies that can be used to provide evidence and support for your case for community-led housing on public land.
The benefits of community-led housing are most clear when the housing plays an obvious role in solving the housing crisis, meaning it is genuinely affordable and provides for people in housing need. There is much research establishing the benefits of social

Read More »

2,500 supply-chain jobs at risk in Sainsbury’s-Asda merger

May 7, 2018

Up to 2,500 jobs in core super market supply chains could be at risk in the wake of the proposed merger of Sainsbury’s and Asda, analysis by the New Economics Foundation (NEF) has found.
Sainsbury’s have reportedly claimed that the merger could lead to lower prices of up to 10%for consumers. Direct job losses and store closures have been ruled out, but it has been reported that lower consumer prices will be met at least in part through negotiating lower prices with suppliers.
Following these reports, analysts at NEF have looked at the potential impact on jobs in the supply chain of major supermarkets, in the event that either all or some of a 10% price cut is passed on to core suppliers of food products and logistical

Read More »

NEF in the news, May 2018

May 4, 2018

Capitalism needs a purposeThe biggest problem with capitalism is a dependency on increased spending, writes Alfie Stirling for International Politics and Society
Fishing waters patrols after Brexit dismissed as ‘posturing’Chris Williams spoke to the Financial Times about the dramatic cost of proposals to patrol 200 nautical miles of ocean.

Read More »

The health system can work differently with communities to improve health

May 4, 2018

Every week in the news there is a story about how our nation’s health is getting worse and the NHS is struggling. There is an urgent need for change in our health system. At the same time, there is a growing understanding that the NHS cannot make the changes we need all by itself. The NHS can operate to remove an appendix, provide vaccinations, set broken legs, prescribe medication. But recent research by the Health Foundation has found that access to health care is only responsible for  10% of the nations health. Other factors such as money and resources,

Read More »

Health as a Social Movement: Theory into Practice

May 4, 2018

The social and economic context which public and community services are operating in has often been described as the ‘perfect storm’; where higher demand and reduced resources frustrate attempts to support the prevention of ill-health and the encouragement of good health.
Communities are mobilising across England to improve experiences of health and care services and the wellbeing of others through many different kinds of local action.
To celebrate and support this, the Health as a Social Movement (HASM) programme has worked in partnership with six vanguard sites across the country to:
Understand and explore their aims and concerns about health and care in their area.
Encourage people to value and build on their assets

Read More »

A fair and sustainable fisheries bill

May 4, 2018

Brexit is being presented as a beacon of hope for fishers. Many in coastal communities are looking to Brexit to lift them out of the economic hardship in which they feel trapped. But modelling from the New Economics Foundation has shown that without action, Brexit risks creating as many ‘losers’ as ‘winners’ across the diverse UK fishing fleet.
The Fisheries Bill alone won’t solve all the issues, but it is an opportunity to improve the way that UK fisheries management is enshrined in law – correcting long-standing failings that have contributed to a sense of

Read More »