GIST: Ireland's Economic Crisis: Who Bears the Cost?

When:5 Apr 2011, 6pm - 7:30pm
Venue:Room 327 Robert Webster Building, UNSW Kensington Campus
Who:Professor Brian Nolan, University College Dublin

GLOBAL IRISH STUDIES TALKS (GIST) 2011 Series

Professor Brian Nolan, School of Applied Social Science, University College Dublin

Ireland is in the throes of a particularly severe fiscal crisis as a result of what some are calling the “Great Recession”, combined with a banking crisis that has resulted in the need for a bail-out by the IMF and EU. This talk outlines the distinctive features of the Irish crisis, and then focuses on its distributional implications – how are the costs being shared, is the crisis increasing poverty and inequality? This is teased out using information from recent household surveys, together with what is known as a “simulation model” which allows us to go beyond those data to estimate the effects of increasing unemployment and falling wages and profits. This also allows us to investigate the way the response by the Irish State to the crisis, in terms of changes in taxation and social spending, has allocated the burden of adjustment so far. Prospects for the medium term, as a new government tries to get to grips with the enormous challenges it faces, are then discussed.

Brian Nolan is currently Professor of Public Policy and Head, School of Applied Social Science, UCD, Dublin. He previously worked in the Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin, where he was Head of the Social Policy Research Division, and in the Central Bank of Ireland. He has a doctorate in economics from the London School of Economics. His main areas of research are poverty, income inequality, the economics of social policy, and health economics and inequalities. Recent publications include studies on social inclusion in the EU, equity in health service use, long-term trends in top incomes, child poverty, deprivation and multiple disadvantage, tax/welfare reform, and the minimum wage. He participates in a range of international comparative research networks and projects on income distribution, poverty and deprivation, and in research aimed at informing the development of social indicators for the EU’s Social Inclusion process. He is co-editor of the Handbook of Income Inequality (2008) published by Oxford University Press, and is a member of the Royal Irish Academy.

Contact: Angela McLoughlin | T: 02 9385 7164 | E: irish@unsw.edu.au

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