IFS announcements

Announcements about IFS research and researchers.

IFS and Health Foundation study on NHS and Social Care funding needs and options

The NHS Confederation has asked the Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Health Foundation to conduct a comprehensive study into the funding needs of the UK’s health and care systems for the next 15 years. The work is designed to identify the challenges faced by health and care services and to provide objective evidence of what will be needed going forward.

The NHS Confederation hopes this research will help inform political and public debate about what will be required to deliver a health and care system fit for the 21st Century.

The first of two reports will be presented at the Confed’s annual conference, Confed18, in Manchester on June 13 and 14. It will summarise UK spending trends since 2002 with projections for funding requirements up until the year 2032. This will include an assessment of the scope for increased effectiveness and productivity to deliver best possible value for money.

The publication will also compare the UK’s spending on health and care to that of other comparable countries before listing potential options for methods of raising additional funding.

A second report will be published towards the end of 2018 examining how well the NHS is performing relative to its principle of ‘providing a comprehensive service, which meets the needs of all’.

Niall Dickson, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, which represents organisations across the healthcare sector, said:

“As just about everyone recognises the pressures on the health and care system are becoming intolerable.

“Now is the time to have an objective assessment of what we need over the next 10 to 15 years to stimulate debate about what we as a society are willing to pay for and what we can expect from our health and care system.  

“We see this important, independent assessment as a first step towards achieving a more rounded and considered debate about the long-term future of these vital services.”

Anita Charlesworth, Director of Research and Economics at the Health Foundation said: “The Health Foundation’s contribution to this important work will include projections of the funding and workforce pressures facing the NHS over the next 15 years.

“The health and care system in the UK has too often been subject to boom and bust planning and short-term decisions. It is time for a longer-term approach to planning, and this requires accurate research and analysis of the pressures the NHS will face in the future.”

Paul Johnson, Director, Institute for Fiscal Studies, said:

"With pressures on the NHS mounting, the public faces tough choices about the type and quality of health services that it wants in the future.

“Informing the choices over levels of funding, future requirements and ways of raising that funding is crucial. We are delighted to be working with the Health Foundation and the NHS Confederation to help provide some of the necessary analysis."

Paul Johnson awarded Honorary Fellowship of CIOT

IFS Director Paul Johnson has been awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) for his outstanding contribution to the field of taxation.

CIOT President John Preston, who presented the award at the annual CIOT President's Luncheon on 9 January, said that the "Honorary Fellowship is awarded to Paul Johnson for his tremendous contribution to tax and the wider economic debate. Nobody who takes an interest in government fiscal policy can doubt Paul’s huge contribution, alongside his IFS colleagues, to enlightening the public and holding politicians to account without fear or favour on this important area of public policy. We at the CIOT are proud to work with Paul and the IFS in a range of areas, from our Better Budgets report (also involving the Institute for Government) to our regular joint debates.”

Professor Michael Devereux, Director of the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation and former IFS Research Fellow, also received an Honorary Fellowship.

IFS research wins Atkinson Award

A paper by IFS researchers has received the 2017 Atkinson Award. The award is given every other year to the best paper published in the Journal of Public Economics. The award recipient is chosen by the editors based on nominations from the entire board of editors and co-editors. The award is named after Tony Atkinson, who was the founding editor of JPubE in 1972 and served as editor for 26 years (jointly with Nick Stern for  the last 15 years). Tony passed away on New Year’s Day of 2017.

The paper, 'Cash by any other name? Evidence on labeling from the UK Winter Fuel Payment' was published in 2014 and the authors are Tim Beatty, Laura Blow, Thomas Crossley, and Cormac O'Dea.

The work was considered a worthy recipient of the award for a number of reasons. First, the paper addresses an important question — namely whether there are deviations from standard rational behavior when an unconditional cash transfer is labeled to be for a specific purpose. This finding has important implications for the welfare effect and desirability of labeled cash transfers. Second, the paper uses a compelling RD design and takes care to investigate alternative interpretations of the results. Finally, the editors felt that the paper was very well written and therefore a pleasure to read.