minimum wageblog

Ethnic Inequality in Low Pay

Minimum wage legislation is supposed to deliver earnings that protect an individual’s living standard from falling below an acceptable level. Quite often it does no such thing, explains Dr Simon Peters. Setting the UK national minimum wage should be a key policy in the framework of equality legislation. Yet there are serious doubts about whether […]


Locked up in Limbo

Indefinite detention of asylum seekers and refugees in the ‘abusive’ Immigration Removal Centres such as Yarl’s Wood is a scandal and a stain on the UK’s reputation, argues Dr Claire Fox. The UK’s treatment of asylum seekers and refugees came under severe, critical, scrutiny last week.  A report was published by two All Party Parliamentary […]


Why do politicians sometimes ignore scientific advice?

Respected scientist Sir Paul Nurse recently expressed his distress that politicians sometimes “ignore” scientific evidence.  Here is a slightly different take on the issue from the perspective of a recent senior civil servant. At one level, of course, I agree with Sir Paul.  I can’t prove it but I suspect that many if not most […]


Can we devolve energy generation?

Would it be possible for the UK’s electricity system to transition to one where 50% of final demand was met by distributed, low-carbon sources and delivered by communities, cooperatives, local authorities, town and parish councils and social housing providers? And, if it was technologically possible, how might the transition come about? What kinds of policy […]


Co-operation v competition

Northern England’s great cities are used to competing. So, asks Iain Deas, is it realistic to expect them to work together for the collective good? George Osborne’s continuing endorsement of a ‘Northern Powerhouse’ raises important questions about future local economic development strategy. The idea underpinning the powerhouse proposal is that some of England’s principal Northern […]


Engaging with the electorate

Politicians seeking election this May need to communicate effectively with potential voters. Rosalynd Southern and Kingsley Purdam explain that – judging by the last General Election – many of them could do better. Good communication skills and an ability to connect with the electorate are key attributes for MPs. But in the UK MPs undertake […]


Why devolution is good for the economy

The case for the devolution of power away from London has centred on the political arguments. Professor Diane Coyle looks at the economic reasons. The context for the devolutionary tide in politics – to the nations and within England to the north and especially Greater Manchester – is that the United Kingdom has long been […]


A Mayor for All Seasons?

From June, Greater Manchester will get an interim mayor as part of a deal with the Government on regional devolution. But its imposition without a referendum is a fundamental error by the political elite that may well backfire, argues Professor Colin Talbot. ‘Mayors’ seem to have become the default answer of many in the political […]


Can the Northern Powerhouse ignore the digital economy?

The Government’s proposed Northern Powerhouse is all well and good, but, asks Anita Greenhill, where does the digital economy fit in this? The concept of a Northern Powerhouse and establishing an alternative to the dominant ‘London Powerhouse’ has strong Government support. It also has cross-party backing, with both the Conservative and Labour parties proposing their […]


The making of the Greater Manchester mayor – what next?

Opposition to a mayoral model for Manchester overlooks a decade of innovation and collaboration that has delivered economic and social benefits for the region, says Prof Francesca Gains. Much has been made of backroom deals between the Chancellor George Osborne and Manchester City Council’s chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein to deliver the most significant devolutionary […]