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11 november 2014

UK: Engagement Meeting

Professor Peter Taylor-Gooby addressed a meeting of 120 senior policy makers from the Treasury, the revenue authorities, the Departments for Business, Innovation and Skills, Work and Pensions and Education on the work of the UK project on 7 October in the Churchill Room at the Treasury in London. 

He stressed:
- the rapid pace of policy change
- the extent to which the 2007-8 economic crisis led to modifications in policies already underway
- the importance of investment in human capital and the difficulties in expanding social investment in the UK context
- future labour-market challenges in they context of population ageing and immigration.

The discussion centred on:
- difficulties in co-ordinating policies that involved other policy actors, including employers and the third sector, over whom the government does have direct control
- implications of greater devolution of powers to Scotland
- policies to address the challenge represented by young people not in employment, education or training
- the constraints imposed by national media treatment of the issues of unemployment and worklessness
- the limitations of institutional capacity in handling rapid policy change
- allied to this, the problem of ensuring private providers deliver the outcomes envisaged by policy makers.

It was noted that the senior UK policy community displayed little interest in learning from innovations in other European countries, but instead looked to Anglo-Saxon countries (especially the US, Australia and New Zealand) as a source for ideas.

In time all universities will organize an engagement meeting.

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