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ESRC Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy (CPP) at IFS

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The ESRC has funded a Centre at IFS since 1991, which since 2018 has been recognised as a global centre of excellence and granted official ESRC Research Institute status.

The overarching objectives of the Centre are to:

  • make major scientific progress in understanding how individuals and firms behave and how they react to government policy;
  • have substantial impact on policy in the fields of taxation, labour market, education, welfare, pensions, and public finances;
  • build technical and policy capacity in a new generation of highly-skilled researchers.

The Centre underpins and is fundamental to IFS's research agenda, and is of central importance to our ability to integrate research with policy analysis. ESRC Centre funding enables the IFS to maintain the combination of impartiality, rigour and authority that is essential if we are to continue to achieve wide-ranging impact on policy and to inform the public debate.

Centre funding contributes to Microeconomic Insights, which is a home for accessible summaries of high quality research which informs the public about microeconomic issues that are, or should be, in the public’s eye.

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Latest news about CPP


The IFS is launching a major new £2.5 million study of inequality in the UK, funded by the Nuffield Foundation and chaired by Nobel Laureate Professor Sir Angus Deaton.

CPP directors, Orazio Attanasio, James Banks and Richard Blundell are on the panel for the review, along with a range of experts from the UK and overseas.

More information about the Review can be found here.


The AEA, in conjunction with 59 associations in related disciplines known as the Allied Social Science Associations (ASSA), holds a three-day meeting each January to present papers on general economics topics. This January, several IFS economists presented their work. 

IFS Research Fellow, Phillipe Aghion, presented work on 'The Innovation Premium to Soft Skills in low-skilled occupations'.

IFS Research Director Orazio Attanasio gave the European Economic Association Lecture on 'Consumption Insurance in Networks with Asymmetric Information'.

CPP co-Director Eric French presented on ...


The Second AASLE Conference brought together researchers from around the world and was hosted by Seoul National University in Seoul, South Korea from 13-15 December 2018. CPP director, Richard Blundell, gave the keynote address about household behviour and the dynamics of inequality.


IFS Research Fellows Gabriella Conti and Martin Weidner have been awarded Consolidator Grants by the European Research Council (ERC). The ERC bestows the Consolidator Grants to outstanding researchers who have a promising scientific track record, and between 7-12 years of experience after the completion of their doctorates.

The ERC grants have been awarded to 291 top scientists across Europe. Funding for these researchers, part of the Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, is worth in total €573 million and will give them a chance to build up their teams and have far-reaching ...


On 28 November, IFS Research Director Orazio Attanasio gave a lecture as part a series convened by the Centre of Excellence for Development Impact and Learning (CEDIL) and the Centre for Evaluation, addressing methods and innovation in primary studies. The lecture was entitled, 'Contextualised structural modelling for policy impact' and focused on Early Childhood interventions. You can find out more and watch a video of the lecture on the CEDIL website.


IFS Research Director Orazio Attanasio has given the 2018/19 Richard Ely Distinguished Lecture Series at Johns Hopkins Department of Economics:

Lecture 1: November 12, 2018; 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm; 

The process of human development over the early years: what we know and what we don’t

Lecture 2: November 13, 2018; 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm; 

Modeling parental behavior

Lecture 3: November 15, 2018; 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm;

Human capital policies: what can be done and at what scale 

The department has funded The Richard Ely Distinguished Lecture Series since 1998. For a two-week period once a ...