Archive for the Education Category

Anti-capitalists in UK universities need a refresher course in the perils of socialism

Anti-capitalists in UK universities need a refresher course in the perils of socialism

The great Harvard economist Joseph Schumpeter, writing in the 1940s, predicted the eventual demise of capitalism. He did not want this to happen. But he envisaged that the “intellectual class” would eventually develop values which were hostile to free markets and private property. Schumpeter’s definition of “intellectuals”

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Incentivise predatory universities with a proportional grade-linked fee structure

Incentivise predatory universities with a proportional grade-linked fee structure

The A-level results have come and gone yet again. Underneath all the hype and excitement, we can see the reliable old friend of economists at work. Namely, the impact of incentives. Michael Gove, in his previous Cabinet incarnation as education secretary, decided to restore the meaning of

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Embarrassing academic reversals show expert opinions are often built on sand

Embarrassing academic reversals show expert opinions are often built on sand

Last week we saw yet another major reversal of opinion by experts. For years we have all been lectured severely on the need to finish every single course of prescription drugs. But the latest wisdom is that this is not necessary. The announcement that petrol and diesel

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Paul Ormerod in discussion with Prospect magazine

Paul Ormerod, Alison Wolf,  and Adam Tooze join Prospect Editor Tom Clark to discuss whether it’s a good thing that so many people go to university; why trust in experts has fallen so low; and how, 10 years on from the banking crisis, a new system of regulation has been

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Believe it or not, Britain is getting happier

Believe it or not, Britain is getting happier

The dominant economic narrative in the UK is a pretty gloomy one just now. True, employment is at a record high. But, counter the whingers and whiners, zero hours contracts and low pay proliferate. The political discourse is full of the struggles of the JAMs – the

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Volterra’s Lucy Dean and Alex O’Byrne present at Annual Transport Practitioners Meeting

Volterra’s Lucy Dean and Alex O’Byrne present at Annual Transport Practitioners Meeting

  Lucy Dean and Alex O’Byrne were recently invited to speak at the 15th Annual Transport Practitioners Meeting (TPM) in Nottingham. TPM is the annual meeting place for all transport planners, highway engineers and urban transport designers. Practitioners, policy makers and academics are invited to present topical papers over

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Volterra: industry partners at UCL’s hands-on training event

Paul Buchanan and Kieran Arter were recent ‘industry partners’ at UCL’s How to Change the World hands-on training programme (HtCtW, 30 May – 9 June 2017). Students were challenged to come up with ways to improve the Strategic Road Network. Paul and Kieran were on hand to answer

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Diane Abbott is rubbish at maths – but not compared to the rest of the country

Diane Abbott is rubbish at maths – but not compared to the rest of the country

Diane Abbott’s car crash of an interview on LBC radio last week hit the headlines. Asked politely but firmly for the numbers and costings of Labour’s plans on the police, her answers varied wildly from sentence to sentence. Of course, being charitable, it was always open to

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Too many young people are wasting their time by doing worthless degrees

Too many young people are wasting their time by doing worthless degrees

It’s an exciting time of the year for many young people, with some setting off to university for the first time and others starting to polish their applications for next year. Good news if you have been accepted to read economics at Cambridge, say, or business studies

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The blob is wrong: competition and independence raise school standards

The blob is wrong: competition and independence raise school standards

The A-Level results released last week confirm the dominance of schools in London and the South East. Provisional league tables have only appeared so far for state schools, but these two regions have two-thirds of the top 100. South Yorkshire, Tyne and Wear, and Wales did not

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