David Phillips

David Phillips

Senior Research Economist


MSc Economics (Distinction), University College London, 2009
BA Economics (1st Class), University of Cambridge, 2006

David is a Senior Research Economist working in the Pensions and Public Finances sector and the Centre for the Evaluation of Development Policies (EDePo). Presently, David is helping lead two main areas of research at the Institute. First is work on devolved and local government finance, with a particular focus on the incentives and risks that different systems entail for sub-national government, and their responses to these. This includes work on implementing the Smith Commission proposals for Scotland and on the ongoing major changes to English local government finance. Second is work on tax and social protection policy in developing countries, including the IFS's DfID-funded Centre for Tax Analysis in Developing Countries (TAXDEV). This centre aims to generate new research, analysis and in-country analytical capacity in the area of tax and benefit policy and administration in (or of relevance to) DfID-priority countries, including Ghana and Ethiopia. Further work is being undertaken in countries such as Mexico and Jordan, and in cross-country studies.

David is also finalising work on the behavioural effects of National Insurance contributions and the UK's short-lived 50% income tax rate. He also has experience of working on a range of other issues including poverty and inequality; labour supply; consumer demand; human capital investment; and social capital. This experience helps inform his ongoing research, especially on tax policy design in developing countries. 


Council tax rises to ease the pace of cuts to local government budgets

| Observations

Yesterday was a big day for local government in England. The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) published the Provisional Local Government Funding Settlement – which sets out how much in the way of core grants it plans to give each English council every year between 2016–17 and 2019–20. This observation analyses what it means for councils and council taxpayers, putting this in the context of the much bigger changes to council funding on the horizon: the full localisation of business rates, and the abolition of central government grants.

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