David Cobham's picture
Affiliation: 
Heriot Watt University
Credentials: 
Professor of economics

Voting history

The Economic Cost of School Closures

Question 3: To what extent will school closures increase gender inequality due to unequal gender distribution of the burden of school closures?

Answer:
To a small degree but persistently
Confidence level:
Confident

Question 2: To what extent will school closures increase inequality in human capital development?

Answer:
By a large amount and persistently
Confidence level:
Confident

Question 1:What damage will school closures have on economic growth over a 10-15 year horizon?

Answer:
Minor
Confidence level:
Not confident

Will COVID-19 Cause Permanent Damage to the UK Economy?

Question 2: Which aspect of the economy poses the greatest risk for a slow recovery?

Answer:
Labour markets (e.g. unemployment hysteresis effects)
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
Labour markets should be understood to subsume human capital issues too: there needs to be a lot of focus on retraining. And please let's not put the emphasis on forcing people to accept low-paid low-productivity jobs as has been the norm since 2010, that's not a way to improve long run economic growth or create a decent civilised society. At some point policymakers might also like to reflect on the fact that their job in this situation, and the lot of many people, would have been much easier if the UK had already had in operation some sort of basic income stream.

Question 1: How quickly will the economy rebound (e.g. to the pre-pandemic trend) once the COVID-19 pandemic has been contained and absent major policy interventions? 

Answer:
Recovery will be slow (5-15 years)
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
If the issue is when the UK will return to the (not very impressive) trend level and growth of the l2-3 years before the pandemic, then 5 years seems too few (but 15 too many).

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