Latest posts

2008

Britisches Postleitzahlen-Lotto, vorbildliches Gelsenkirchen

Das Vereinigte Königreich ist in Wirklichkeit längst kein einiges Land, sondern tief in sich gespalten. Auf der einen Seite gibt es erfolgreiche Orte wie London und Oxford, auf der anderen Seite aber auch Städte wie Hull und Sunderland, die seit Jahrzehnten mit dem Niedergang zu kämpfen haben. Kein angenehmes Thema für Politiker. [...]

When Hassle Means Help

With the number of people out of work and living off benefits staying stubbornly above 4 million, policy makers are increasingly looking at new ideas to get people off welfare and into work. Especially because, since 1997, over £75 billion of Government funds has been ploughed into creating welfare to work programmes. When Hassle Means Help, with contributions from international welfare experts, examines why conditionality works well in other countries, such as the US, Sweden and Germany – why it isn’t working in the UK - and how governments can most effectively get people back into work. [...]

Farewell to Britain

I wish Britain well for the future although times ahead do not look rosy. But most of all I hope that Britain will soon rediscover her liberal roots. Europe does not need another Germany but a Britain promoting the ancient British values of liberty, free markets and free trade. [...]

Looking for the Invisible Hand

The real challenge in the face of widespread financial instability is to keep perspective and not give in to a populist, anti-market sentiment. For that would be the real, long-term damage from our times of economic difficulty. [...]

Haus proud

New houses in Germany are cheaper than their British counterparts and on average 50 per cent larger. Given that the two countries have a similar population density, what’s going wrong in the UK? [...]

Is the Green Belt sacred?

The ‘green belt' description has elevated imagination over reality in Britain's planning system. To the public, the areas it refers to seem to be much needed reserves of nature in an overcrowded, concrete Britain. They are, or at least they are believed to be, the last remnants of what was once England's green and pleasant land. To say anything against the concept of the green belt thus seems to smack of treachery. But we need some hard-headed thought about why and how we protect land from the development we need. [...]

Parting shot

Britain is one of the most expensive countries on the planet and London its rip-off capital. Filling your car, eating out, staying at a hotel or just doing the weekly shopping are all more costly undertakings than in other industrialised countries around the globe – even without taking house prices into account. [...]

Urban regeneration isn’t working (but it can be better)

Dr Oliver Marc Hartwich is Chief Economist at Policy Exchange although he's about to emigrate for a new think tank appointment in Australia. In this Platform he explains the argument of the urban regeneration paper that he edited and that caused such a storm earlier this week. [...]

Clueless road to serfdom

THE great sociologist Max Weber once defined the art of politics as "a strong and slow boring of hard boards" that required "both passion and perspective". What, one wonders, would Weber have made of Kevin Rudd, who early this month ventured into the sphere of political philosophy with a renewed attack on liberal thinker Friedrich Hayek? While it is hard to deny the passion behind the Prime Minister's views, the perspective of his critique of the Nobel prize-winning economist is far from clear. [...]

Cities Unlimited

A decade of regeneration policies has failed to stop the inequality of opportunity between towns and cities in the North and those in the South East increasing. In their third report in the series on regeneration in the UK, Cities Unlimited, Tim Leunig and James Swaffield recommend a series of radical proposals that would reverse the trend and inject a much needed momentum back into regeneration policy. The key recommendations from the report are to increase the size of London by allowing landowners the right to convert industrial land into residential land in areas of above average employment; expand Oxford and Cambridge dramatically, just as Liverpool and Manchester expanded in the 19th century and for the Government to roll up current regeneration funding streams and allocate the money direct to local authorities. [...]