Besley, Timothy, Coelho, Miguel and Van Reenen, John (2013) Investing for prosperity: skills, infrastructure and innovation. National Institute Economic Review, 224 (1). R1-R13. ISSN 0027-9501
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What policies and institutions are needed to sustain long-run growth in the UK? We describe an optimistic story of the UK economy over the past 30 years. From the late 1970s, the UK reversed a century of relative decline in terms of per capita GDP with our main counterparts in the US, France and Germany. A key factor behind this improvement was an array of policy changes including an expansion of higher education and greater competition in product and labour markets. However, major weaknesses with respect to long-run investment in human capital, infrastructure and innovation remain. These are hampered by problems of short-termism and policy risk. We propose a series of radical reforms to address these problems: such as more flexibility in schooling with a new focus on disadvantage; a new architecture for national infrastructure decisions and more competition in banking.
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