Higher Education and Brexit: It is not just about the money

By Dr Fabio Aricò

The media and the press have bashed us with endless sequences of statistics and figures about the loss of fee revenues and research funding universities would incur as the result of a Brexit. There is no doubt that this is a real threat for the health of the British Higher Education system, but when thinking education we should not focus exclusively on money matters: quality is the real concern. I am an immigrant academic, who had to compete to secure an academic job in the UK. More than that, I am the teacher of a large and internationally diverse group of students, and I can appreciate the benefits of working in an internationalised campus environment. In this post I will argue that competition among academics, and diversity within the student population, are the key determinants of quality and excellence of the British Higher Education system. Brexit is a threat to such excellence, and here are the reasons why.

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Will a Brexit Lead to a “Scotxit” (Scotland leaving the UK)?

By Dr Anders Poulsen

I believe this is likely, in part because of the simple calculus of cost benefit analysis that may favour Scotland leaving the United Kingdom, but in part also because the EU may offer such favourable terms to Scotland to join them, not necessarily because it makes economic sense for the EU to do so, but because punishment is a behavioural phenomenon that we often see in our experiments.  I explain these below.

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Where has all the research (money) gone?

By Dr Christa Brunnschweiler

I’ve been following the discussion of the various costs (or benefits) for the UK of leaving the EU for a while now. I follow them as a not entirely disinterested outsider: I am not eligible to vote in the upcoming referendum on 23 June, but I am a citizen of another European country and can expect to be affected by the vote’s outcome.

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Drug prices post-Brexit – an expensive pill to swallow?

by  Dr Farasat Bokhari

Much has already been written about the potential effects of Brexit on both the British economy as well as the rest of the world, vis-à-vis effects on immigration, employment, wages, inflation, investment, growth and so forth, and by now we know that either the sky is going to fall or it will be like manna falling from the sky.  Definitely one of those two.  Reality however is a bit more nuanced, and what follows may be sector specific and depend on the regulations and terms that are negotiated upon exit.  Post exit, will the UK be on its own in terms of trade agreements with the rest of the world, or will it, like Norway, be able to enjoy benefits of a single market by entering into European Economic Area (EEA)? Not to be gauche, how does it affect the price of my medicines here in the UK?   While the Farage v. Cameron debate rages on, in this blog I give example from just one sector – pharmaceuticals – to discuss how prices of branded drugs, which include new and important therapies, may increase due to various trade agreements post Brexit.

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Posh and Brex

By Dr David Hugh-Jones

Like everything in Britain, the Brexit debate is all about class. Riffing off Nancy Mitford’s famous distinction between “U” (posh) and “non-U” (vulgar), Harry Mount in the Sunday Times[1] divided the voters up into “EU” and “non-EU”. There’s the sophisticated, well-travelled, culturally open remainers. Then there’s the salt-of-the-earth Brexiteers, who get regarded a bit like the citizens of Rock Ridge in Blazing Saddles: “just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know… morons.”

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Should markets be regulated in Brussels or London? Brexit and competition policy

Cross posted on the UEA CCP Blog.

by Prof Bruce Lyons

Much of the UK referendum debate jumps in on headline details about specific ‘regulatory burdens’ without thinking carefully about how to compare membership of the EU against life outside the single market.  In this post, I set out a framework for thinking about the economic advantages and disadvantages of having regulation harmonised across the EU (and possibly implemented centrally in Brussels), as compared with an independent UK-specific regulation (for implementation in London or the devolved nations).[1]

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The behavioural economics of parkrun

By Prof Theodore Turocy 

Last week, Stoke Gifford Parish Council voted to institute a £1 per runner charge on the parkrun (http://www.parkrun.org.uk) event held at Little Stoke Park in Bristol, citing, among other factors, the maintenance costs imposed on the park by the 200 or more participants who run, jog, or walk 5km as part of the event each week. This item has been newsworthy, among other reasons, as national policy has an objective of encouraging health and fitness.  Some of these national initiatives are based on standard economic principles of subsidising to encourage certain types of activity, and taxing to discourage others.  For example, hosting the 2012 London Olympics was justified in part in the hope it would create a legacy of increased participation in sport, while the recent tax on drinks with a high sugar content is intended to help reduce excessive consumption of sugar, which can have serious long-term health consequences.  How, then, did we come to a situation where a local council is, in effect, proposing to tax an activity that policy at the national level would encourage?

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Runners at a parkrun event

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