On 12 February Wendy Carlin, the head of our steering group, took part in BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking debate on “Britain’s Economy”, chaired by Anne McElvoy. Alongside her: Will Hutton, political economist and author, whose new book argues that “the free-market economy has delivered a very different outcome from promised” (Financial Times); Luke Johnson, an entrepreneur; and Richard Davies, The Economist‘s economics editor.
The conversation ranged from a discussion of policies to promote long-termism in firms, to a debate over whether more economists should have experience in business. The panel also spent time discussing how better economics education could stimulate this wise policy insight – and entrepreneurial success – in future graduates.
It would be impossible (and less interesting than just listening to the podcast) to summarise the full 45 minutes. But, a few highlights for us:
Two things that Wendy’s curriculum picks up on. The first one is a bit depressing: it’s that we’ve seen everything we are seeing now before, and that suggests we should have a much stronger teaching of the history of economics… [CORE] also emphasises the teaching of the history of economic thought.
(The Economist has written about CORE several times, most recently on 7 February this year.)
It’s true that not long ago an American told me that in some ways it is easier to start a business in the UK than in America – because if you leave a job there you have no health cover, whereas in the UK you have the National Health Service.
When the world is very calm, and everyone thinks that risk has gone down, we should be very concerned.
For more on this insight download the latest beta release of The Economy, which will be available on 16 February. Minsky is in the new Unit 17, section 9.