Brexit, devolution and local government

Recent years have seen big – and sometimes divisive – debates about, and changes to, the governance of the UK: Brexit; the Scottish independence referendum; and shifts in responsibility from central to devolved and local governance. The IFS has played a key role in informing these debates, providing authoritative and impartial analysis of the key economic issues involved.

In the run up to the EU referendum, we assessed the potential fiscal and economic effects of Brexit and the channels by which immigration can affect the public finances. Since the vote to leave the EU, we have analysed the exposure of households’ food spending to tariffs and the exchange rate, and have begun work on the effects of trade shocks on labour market outcomes and regional economies, and potential policy responses

Our work on Scottish independence examined the short- and long-term fiscal outlook for an independent Scotland, and considered options for tax and benefit reforms. More recently, IFS research has focused on changes to the funding regimes for Scotland and Wales within the UK.

The IFS has also launched a new programme of research and analysis in the context of ongoing major changes to the local government finance to inform policy decisions and to provide new evidence on the impact of reforms on local outcomes. Alongside this we analyse local government social care spending, with ongoing research investigating the interactions with health service utilisation. And we have undertaken work on police spending and pensions in the context of shifts in responsibility from central government to local taxpayers, and wide variations in local tax capacity.

Journal Article | Economic Journal
In this study, Ian Preston sets out the channels by which immigration can affect the public finances.
Conference | 22 March 2016
At this event in Edinburgh, David Phillips from IFS and colleagues from the University of Stirling examined the new fiscal framework, paying particular attention to the adjustments to Scotland's block grant.
Journal Article | Oxford Review of Economic Policy
Paul Johnson and Ian Mitchell discuss the economics of Brexit and lessons for the economics profession.

Contacts

Neil Amin-Smith

Neil Amin-Smith

Research Economist

Rowena Crawford

Rowena Crawford

Associate Director

Carl Emmerson

Carl Emmerson

Deputy Director

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson

Director

Peter Levell

Peter Levell

Senior Research Economist

Agnes Norris Keiller

Agnes Norris Keiller

Research Economist

David Phillips

David Phillips

Associate Director

Polly Simpson

Polly Simpson

Research Economist

Richard Disney

Richard Disney

Research Fellow

Rachel Griffith

Rachel Griffith

Research Director

Matthias Parey

Matthias Parey

Research Associate

Ian Preston

Ian Preston

Research Fellow

Stephen Smith

Stephen Smith

Research Associate