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Impact - 2019

Our academic impact


Hosting one of the UK’s only two prestigious UKRI-funded social science Research Institutes, IFS economists carry out cutting-edge empirical research on a par with our leading universities.

IFS Research Director, Rachel Griffith, was elected President of the Royal Economic Society for 2019-2020. She is the Society’s first female President in over 35 years and only the second woman to hold the post in the Society’s 129-year history.

IFS’s report, Living standards, poverty and inequality in the UK: 2019 received an attention score on Altmetric of 923, putting it in the top 1% of all academic publications tracked.

Researchers published 148 articles in 15 leading field journals.

Richard BlundellThe prestigious National Academy of Sciences in the US elected  IFS’s Richard Blundell as one of only six European ‘foreign member associates’. He is the only economist foreign member associate this year, and there is only one other in the UK in total.

IFS Research Director Imran Rasul and IFS Research Fellow Aureo de Paula have joined Research Director Fabien Postel-Vinay as Fellows of the Econometric Society. This highly prestigious international award reflects the world leading quality and impact of their academic economic research. 

IFS has a network of over 150 Research Fellows and Associates, based at leading universities and research organisations. Half are based in the UK and half overseas, including the Sorbonne, Toulouse, Tokyo, Chicago, MIT, Stanford, Yale, and the World Bank.

Our policy impact

Our research and expertise is drawn upon by national, regional and local policymakers in the UK and overseas, as well as MPs from all parties. We publish high quality, policy-relevant research:

Annual flagship Green Budget report, setting out options and challenges for the Chancellor, had over 22,000 views within 7 days of its launch.

39 IFS reports on key areas of UK policy in 2019.

In 2019, IFS was mentioned 165 times in parliamentary debates, and over 2,000 times in the last ten years. (Source: Hansard)

In a cross-party survey of MPs and Peers, IFS was the “most influential” think tank. (Source: ComRes, March 2019)

“When I worked in the Treasury, we knew the IFS would keep us honest...and we knew that having an independent check on our costings and analysis was an excellent discipline.”

Lord Gus O’Donnell, former Cabinet Minister and IFS President


Working in collaboration

Inequality - The IFS Deaton Review

One of the fruits of IFS’s national and international collaboration with leading academics and policymakers is the Review of Inequalities in the 21st century , led by Novel Prize-winner, Sir Angus Deaton. The review involves over 100 academics from around the world, including Penny Goldberg (World Bank), Thomas Piketty (Paris) and Nobel-Prize winner Jean Tirole (Toulouse).

“I am delighted that IFS and the Nuffield Foundation have launched this review, and am honoured that I have been asked to chair it. It is an exciting prospect to work with so many distinguished scholars in so many disciplines to try to understand more about the nature of inequality, what it is about inequality that upsets so many people, and what might be done about it.”

Professor Sir Angus Deaton, Nobel Laureate and Chair of the Review

Find out more about Inequality: The IFS Deaton Review here.


Our impact on society

IFS event

We inform public and policy debates on issues such as education, health, inequality and the public finances. We significantly increased engagement and reach in 2019.

Our primary social media channel is Twitter, where we have over 36,000 followers. This is an increase of over 5,000 in 12 months.

Our main website traffic doubled in 2019 to 2.7 million page views

We held 40 events in 2019, attended by more than 3,900 people from media, policy, business, third sector and the general public (1,500 more than 2018).

Our media impact

Paul Johnson from The IFS

IFS staff regularly engage with journalists from print, online and broadcast media. Our research, analysis and reactive commentary earned us over 32,000 UK media mentions in 2019 (source: Kantar).

“The Institute for Fiscal Studies’ genuine impartiality has become a major asset in scrutinising claims and counter claims.”

Heather Stewart, The Guardian