Latest RLAB News

Below are the latest headlines for CEP and STICERD. For full coverage see the CEP News and Visitors Site and the STICERD News and Visitors Site

LSE News online
Internet speed closely linked to property values

Londoners show a greater willingness than the rest of the country to pay for broadband, reflecting very high usage in the capital city for both work and personal reasons. ''Speed matters,'' says Gabriel Ahlfeldt, Associate Professor of Urban Economics and Land Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science. ''The European Commission has set a target by 2020 that every European citizen will need access to at least 30 megabits per second and at least 50 per cent of households should subscribe to internet connections above 100 megabits per second.''

This press release was posted online on July 31, 2014
Link to press release here

Related publications
'Speed 2.0. Evaluating Access to Universal Digital Highways', Gabriel M. Ahfeldt, Pantelis Koutroumpis and Tommaso Valletti, SERC Discussion Paper no.161, July 2014

Related links
Gabriel Ahlfeldt webpage
SERC website

LSE News and Media - Around LSE
Professor John Van Reenen jointly awarded the 2014 EIB Prize for Excellence in Economic and Social Research

Professor John Van Reenen, Department of Economics and Centre for Economic Performance, has been awarded the European Investment Bank Institute's 2014 'Outstanding Contribution Award'. The accolade, jointly awarded to Professor Nicholas Bloom of Stanford University, recognises academics whose research is related to innovation, market structure and competitiveness.

This article was posted online by LSE News and Media - Around LSE on July 28, 2014
Link to article here

Related links
Nicholas Bloom webpage
John Van Reenen webpage
Productivity and Innovation Programme webpage
Management Practices and Organisational Structures Research webpage (Argentina)
Plan Terapia para Todos: la salud mental de los economistas y las series policiales de Film and Arts

''En los paises ricos, las enfermedades mentales son el 38 percent de todas las enfermedades; y el porcentaje trepa a 50 percent en la poblacion trabajadora'', dice Richard Layard, economista de la London School of Economics, que promueve en Inglaterra algo asi como un plan de Terapia para Todos. Layard cuenta, en un libro escrito junto al psicologo David Clark, que los costos de un programa a gran escala de terapias cognitivo-conductuales cortas - 16 sesiones - ''basadas en evidencia con resultados reales'' son mucho menores a los costos que implican las dolencias emocionales en terminos de dias no trabajados, desmotivacion, etcetera.

This article was published by (Argentina) on July 27, 2014
Link to article here

Related Publications
Thrive: the Power of Evidence Based Psychological Therapies, Richard Layard and David M Clark, Penguin, July 2014

Related Links
Richard Layard webpage
David Clark webpage
Wellbeing Programme webpage

Report Launch:
Facing Debt: Economic Resilience in Newham

On 18th July 2014 the final report was launched from a year long research project conducted by the London School of Economics for the London Borough of Newham into the impact of debt and the experience of life on a low income.


The rising cost of living, stagnant wages and welfare reform have placed many households under increased financial strain. This report, commissioned by the London Borough of Newham and written independently by Professor Anne Power, offers a powerful insight into the lives of some of the hardest pressed people in our country. This research highlights the struggle of both working and non-working households and explores the relationship between financial planning and skills and attitudes to credit and debt. The report also provides a valuable insight into the real impact of welfare reforms and helps to inform Newham’s ongoing work to strengthen resilience.


A panel discussion was held with Polly Toynbee (Guardian), Vidhya Alakeson (Resolution Foundation), Professor Anne Power (LSE) and Sir Robin Wales (Mayor of Newham). The discussion considered the drivers and solutions to increasing levels of personal debt and what can be done locally, nationally and within the community to build economic resilience. The London Borough of Newham also outlined its plans to respond to the analysis in the report.  

The full report is available here (pdf). An audio recording of the launch event is also available.

Watch an interview with a Newham resident who took part in the research.

The Guardian Newspaper
Maitreesh Ghatak: India needs more than Narendra Modi's trickle-down model

EOPP director, Prof Maitreesh Ghatak, has recently published an article in the Guardian (July14th 2014) to comment on Narendra Modi's vision of growth and development. India's PM points to Gujarat as an emblem of economic success. Prof Ghatak points out that despite impressive growth, the state lags behind on welfare. He argues that a trickle-down model will not suffice and that "structural reforms are needed to facilitate growth, make it broad-based, and improve the efficiency and accountability of anti-poverty programmes" To read the article click here.

Austin Robinson Prize awarded to STICERD academic
Johannes Spinnewijn

At this year's Royal Economic Society Annual Conference, held in Manchester 7-9 April 2014, Johannes Spinnewijn won the 2013 prize for his paper Insurance and Perceptions- How to Screen Optimists and Pessimists. Launched in 2007, this annual prize is awarded for the best non-solicited paper published in The Economic Journal by an author who has completed their PhD in the last five years. The winner is selected by the Editors of the EJ. His presentation is now available to view on YouTube.

Oriana Bandiera was the Programme Chair for the 2014 conference, and the main sessions are available at