Major research project into UK productivity launches

Tue, 22 May 2018 13:14:00 BST

A major new research project aimed at increasing productivity and raising the living standards of millions of people across the UK is set to be officially launched.

Glasgow Caledonian University will play a key role in the Productivity Insights Network, which will look at ways to spread economic spin-offs evenly across the country.

The University is one of nine academic partners in the £1.5million project, funded by The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), alongside the University of Cambridge.

Dr Leaza McSorley, lecturer in Economics at Glasgow School for Business and Society, will lead a network of PhD researchers who are examining how increased productivity could benefit people who are unemployed or on low incomes.

Productivity is arguably the most pressing economic challenge facing the UK, with productivity growth continuing to be slow as the gap with other countries grows.

Dr McSorley said: "Productivity not only drives economic performance it is key to increasing wages, reducing inequality and improving living standards across the different regions of the UK.

"Increasing productivity is the key way that people will be able to get a pay rise and be able to progress through their careers into more productive jobs."

The network, which is led by the University of Sheffield, will be officially launched at an event in London tonight.

Businesses, policymakers and academics will hear the initial findings from a number of reviews and details of how to apply to a new Productivity Project Fund.

Professor Tim Vorley, deputy director of the Productivity Insights Network, added: “Despite being a political priority the productivity puzzle continues to frustrate economists and policymakers.

“The aim of the Productivity Insights Network is to rethink the productivity issues facing the UK and to develop new insights that challenge conventional views.”