Inequality & poverty
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Wealth & assets
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Cities and regions

Regional wealth inequality: a nation divided

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On Monday, families across the country will be feeling a mix of excitement, anxiety and relief as kids go back to school (with Scotland having already gone through it). Experiences that unite every corner of the UK feel rarer these days, with talk of division and left-behind places common. Differences between South Shields and South … Continued

Living standards
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Productivity & industrial strategy
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Cities and regions

Poor productivity and high housing costs are driving a ‘living standards exodus’ from London

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As a Londoner it’s fair to say that as a city we’re quite good at giving ourselves a pat on the back (though apparently self-loathing Londoners are a thing too). It’s often suggested that London is an economic powerhouse, productive, innovative and leaving the rest of the country in its wake. However new research by … Continued

Matthew Whittaker
Living standards
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Incomes
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Inequality & poverty
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Cities and regions

When it comes to living standards, geography matters

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A slowdown in economic growth and the recent return of the pay squeeze has focused attention once again on the extent to which absolute living standard improvements have stalled across UK households since the financial crisis of 2008. But the distribution of gains and losses matters too – especially in the context of a vote … Continued

Torsten Bell
Labour market
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Cities and regions
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Technological change
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Economic growth

No more robot wars in London

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“The robots are coming to take our jobs”, the Evening Standard told Londoners in December 2016. In case that didn’t depress their readers enough, the article went on to spell out the coming doom: “The sheer pace of change in computational power and grinding efficiencies of automation will alter or eliminate many of our jobs, … Continued

Torsten Bell
Cities and regions
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Political parties and elections

Bored of Brexit? Don’t switch off from the election just yet

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The Prime Minister called an election, and told the country it was an election about delivering Brexit. Financial markets and most commentators agreed, focusing their responses on what a surprise vote on 8th June might mean for the shape Brexit takes. But before everyone, leavers and remainers combined, who can’t think of anything worse than … Continued

Living standards
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Labour market
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Cities and regions

We can work it out? The jobs challenge facing the Liverpool City Region’s mayor

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Although June’s election will dominate the headlines over the next month and a half, voters in some of England’s biggest cities will go to the polls in two weeks to elect Metro Mayors. Like all the city regions voting on a Mayor, the Liverpool City Region (LCR) – comprised of the local authorities of Halton, … Continued

Living standards
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Labour market
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Cities and regions

Tees-ing out the issues

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On 4 May voters in the Tees Valley will go to the polls to elect the region’s first ‘Metro Mayor’. He or she will wield new, if limited, powers affecting the whole region. But more important, in many ways, than the specific hard power of decisions the new mayor can directly control is the opportunity … Continued

Living standards
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Productivity & industrial strategy
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Inequality & poverty
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Skills
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Cities and regions

Can a new generation of political leaders tackle Britain’s regional inequalities?

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2017 will see the UK begin its departure from the European Union. However, as the UK seeks to shed some politicians in Brussels, we will be getting some new ones at home. Greater Manchester, Liverpool, Tees, West Midlands, Bristol and Bath, and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough will all go to the polls to elect mayors and … Continued

Living standards
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Cities and regions
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Economic growth

Revving up the Midlands engine

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The Midlands Engine could use some oil. That’s the conclusion drawn from this morning’s statistics on regional growth. While 2015 did bring respectable growth to the West Midlands city region with Birmingham and in particular Solihull – the fastest growing local authority in the country – performing well, it also makes the scale of the … Continued

Living standards
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Productivity & industrial strategy
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Cities and regions

The future of devolution is in the hands of half a dozen ‘first generation Metro Mayors’

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In less than 200 days some of Britain’s largest city regions will go to the polls to elect ‘Metro Mayors’. Unlike many other mayors across England, they will wield new powers that affect large areas and populations. Whether or not Metro Mayors are a success will depend on whether this first generation of new civic … Continued

Torsten Bell
Living standards
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Productivity & industrial strategy
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Cities and regions
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Economic growth

First impressions matter for England’s first generation of Metro Mayors

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  First impressions matter – not just in job interviews or blind dates, but for England’s first generation of Metro Mayors too. Resting on the shoulders of the half dozen elected mayors next May in the likes of Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and Sheffield city region is not only their own careers, but the … Continued

Cities and regions
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Housing

Home ownership struggle reaches Coronation Street

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Handwringing about the housing crisis has become a national pastime. Not surprising perhaps, with home ownership becoming an increasingly unrealistic dream for many younger families. This was once a London-centric issue, but there is growing evidence to suggest the crisis is spreading across the rest of the country – with Manchester and other big northern … Continued

Living standards
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Cities and regions

Five charts that London’s mayoral candidates need to see on living standards

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It’s now less than four months to go till London’s mayoral elections. Given how important living standards issues like pay, jobs and housing are to Londoners, coming up with effective policies to tackle these challenges could make the difference in what’s set to be a tight race. Here are five charts that should be front … Continued

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