Please update your browser

You're using a version of Internet Explorer that isn't supported by Questia.
To get a better experience, go to one of these sites and get the latest
version of your preferred browser:

Going for Growth

By Thompson, Noel | Renewal, Autumn-Winter 2011 | Go to article overview

Going for Growth

Thompson, Noel, Renewal

Will Straw (ed.) ippr, 2011

'In the long run we are all dead. Economists set themselves too easy a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only say that when the storm is long past the ocean will be flat once again'. Keynes's challenge to economists in his Tract on Monetary Reform is as relevant today as it was in the 1920s. Iterated in a context where Great War public expenditure had significantly inflated the National Debt and contributed to the turbulence of the immediate post-war period, Keynes warned against any notion that fiscal retrenchment and the equilibrating properties of the market would be sufficient to move the economy back to full employment and sustained growth. The Tract itself proposed a more active and imaginative monetary policy but his later work emphasised the need for state intervention in the form of increased public expenditure, both to supplement private sector activity and to create the kind of infrastructure and confidence that would allow that sector to flourish. Again, there are powerful parallels with contemporary concerns; rendered even more powerful by recent events.

The Institute for Public Policy Research's Going for Growth can be seen as a response to the Keynesian call for creative and positive thinking in difficult circumstances. Certainly it is a refreshing antidote to the Coalition's focus on front-end-loaded fiscal retrenchment and unquestioning faith in the power of market forces to rebalance the economy in favour of an employment-generating private sector; a faith which recent GDP figures suggest rests on a belief that dead cats do indeed bounce.

Contributors to this volume would seem to have the necessary credentials to rise to the Keynesian challenge: ex-civil servants (the Treasury, the Department of Innovation, Universities and Skills, the Department for Work and Pensions); luminaries and directors of European, British and American think tanks (the ippr, the Institute for Welsh Affairs, Demos, the Hans Brockler Foundation, the German Institute for Economic Research, the British National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts); financial analysts (Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers, McKinsey and Company); academics at or associated with universities such as Oxford, the LSE, Columbia, Flensburg, London South Bank, Buckingham Cardiff Business School; employees/associates of international agencies (OECD, WTO); senior trade unionists; private and public sector advisers to the great, the good and the prestigious (the European Parliament, the Welsh Assembly Government, the Downing Street Policy Unit, the European Commission, the government of Shanghai and Chancellors and Presidents of US academic institutions) and, more generally, economic gurus of varying degrees of leftish persuasion. All were assembled for three roundtable discussions in the autumn of 2010 under the auspices of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Left Foot Forward and the Progressive Economics Panel and it is these discussions and deliberations which form the basis of this short book.

What emerges is what might be expected from such an assemblage: an authoritative assessment of our present predicament and policy prescriptions of an activist and, essentially, 'progressive' kind. Ussher considers how within existing constraints fiscal and monetary policy might best be used to accelerate recovery, making the point that as regards the banking sector it is unfair to ask it simultaneously to lend and to effect a prudential rebuilding of its balance sheets. In this regard the Bank of England should consider the purchase of corporate bonds, rather than quantitative easing, to furnish the requisite investment to the private sector.

Philippe Legrain emphasises the importance of playing to the high-skill, high-value-added activity that will allow us to meet the formidable challenge of the emerging and emerged economic giants of the global economy; something that will require Britain to address the perennial issue of ensuring a suitably skilled workforce (Adam Lent), but also adopt a multifaceted approach to innovation involving, amongst other things, an innovation-focused public procurement strategy.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)


1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25,

Cited article

Going for Growth


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25,

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.