This post is the second of a Communicating Economics series outlining what I’ve been reading, attending or thinking about over the past week or so.



The UK general election is in full swing with the official party manifestos likely to be published over the coming week. To help journalists analyse the parties’ policy proposals (if any!), Diane Coyle and I have pulled together a directory of over 65 economists available to provide evidence and expert insights.


Economists who haven’t yet signed up are welcome to join us. Journalists who would like to see the list of researchers with their areas of expertise and contact details, please do get in touch with Diane or me via email or Twitter. Diane has also set up this public list of our election economists who are on Twitter.


Using the hashtag #GE2017Economists, we’re tweeting links to policy commentaries and election-related reports, several of which have appeared in the past week commenting on Labour’s leaked manifesto:

Elsewhere, the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) has a special election website, which launched with an overview of the economic landscape of the UK by NIESR director Jagjit Chadha; and their latest quarterly forecasts for the UK and global economy.


As its first contribution to election analysis, the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) at the London School of Economics (LSE) has published its latest update on UK real wages, which shows them falling once again after modest growth in 2015 and 2016 – what some will no doubt refer to as the first instalment of the Brexit pay cut.


Away from the election, Alvin Birdi and Ashley Lait at the Economics Network have summarised their recent conference at the UK Treasury on the public’s understanding of economics, how economic literacy might be improved, and the relationship between economists and the media. Their colleague Martin Poulter has ‘storified’ the tweets around the event.


This week has also seen several posts on VoxEU and LSE blogs drawing on research presented at the Economic History Society (EHS) annual conference earlier this spring. As well as being fascinating summaries of a range of topics, they are good examples of how economic historians can make their work accessible and relevant to audiences beyond academia:

Finally, I spent part of the past week in France with the team writing the interim report of the European high-level expert group on sustainable finance, and was struck by how upbeat the national mood felt after the presidential election – a little reminiscent of the UK twenty years ago. Emmanuel Macron, of course, faces big challenges as laid out here by Philippe Legrain, here by Philippe Aghion and here by Dani Rodrik, but at least he has some economic experts among his advisers – their columns on VoxEU are outlined here. For the UK’s financial sector, his election could prove to be not such good news, as economic historian Janette Rutterford explains here. More of such historical insights on contemporary economic and political issues are on the new EHS blog, The Long Run.