Posts from "Tom Healy"

Tom Healy

Tom Healy is Director of the Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI). Tom has previously worked in the Economic and Social Research Institute, the Northern Ireland Economic Research Centre, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the National Economic and Social Forum and the Department of Education and Skills.

He holds a PhD (economics and sociology) from UCD. His research interests have included the impact of education and social capital on well-being, social vision and economic strategy for the island of Ireland, Education, Housing and Health.

Why should taxpayers pay for ‘free’ higher education?

Posted on April 06, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Why indeed? Data published by the CSO and OECD show much better earnings and employment outcomes for third level graduates.  The cost of providing higher education is not small. At approximately €9,000 on average per student per annum the true total cost varies by location, type of course and field of study. Tuition fees and the ‘student charge’ are sizeable but when added together are …

Posted in: InequalityTaxation

Poverty, Wages and Violence

Posted on March 29, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The publication – coincidentally – of two reports in Northern Ireland in the last week has drawn attention to the importance of wages in the Northern economy. While the reports received very extensive media coverage in the Northern media, there was very little in the South. This is regrettable as poverty, wages and community tensions constitute a triad with implications for long-term economic …

Posted in: JobsNorthern Ireland Wages

The temptation of Odysseus

Posted on March 21, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
In the ancient Greek epic poem Odyssey, the ship of Odysseus sails past dangerous rocks as his ears are tortured by the sweet song of the Sirens.  This song drove Odysseus mad with desire, and his sailors had to tie him to the ship rail, prohibiting him from giving in to temptation.  If it were not for this the ship would have crashed on the rocks. Picking on this story during a recent address …

Cé na luachanna le haghaidh cén fhís ?

Posted on March 16, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
What values for what vision was the title of a ‘Léacht’ I gave over a year ago at the Fóram Díospóireachta in Dublin. The talk was transmitted by Raidio na Gaeltachta later last year and an audio is available here.  The talk, which was given in the Irish language, focuses on the challenges along the road of building a stronger society and economy – one that serves human needs and …

Health a public good?

Posted on March 01, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Health has been in the news a lot recently. Accident and Emergency under pressure. Budgets running over. Private health insurance costs ever rising. Standards of care concerns to the fore. People worried about whether they will get the treatment they need when they need it and within their means. Health can be an emotional issue. Everyone cares about health because everyone has to face times of …

Have the US and the UK something to teach Europe?

Posted on February 21, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
It’s a funny old world as a former British Prime Minister once said. The United States and the United Kingdom have distinguished themselves in the last quarter century as leaders in wage in equality, a declining share of wages in total income and enhanced ‘labour market flexibility’.  Larry Summers has recently referred to the US economy as moving towards a Downton Abbey with a widening …

Posted in: Northern Ireland

Raising wages or cutting taxes?

Posted on February 15, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
‘Putting more money into the pockets of consumers and workers’ Now who could be against that? ...after six years of unrelenting austerity, wage cuts for some, tax increases for nearly everyone …. But the problem is that ‘putting more money into the pockets’ can be done in a number of ways. Taxes on income can be lowered by one means or another. Or, wages can be increased. Creating new …

Posted in: Labour costsTaxationWages

Time for a debate on Higher Education

Posted on February 07, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Investment – or the lack of it – has been a frequent theme in the debate about how economic recovery could be assisted through targeted, timely and beneficial interventions. Typically, mention of investment invokes images of men and women with yellow hats, cranes in the horizon and engineers surveying property. But, investment also includes the time, money and effort put into educating young …

The best behaved pupil?

Posted on January 26, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
As memories of the Troika in Ireland recede and as the narrative has been truly set we should pause and ask some hard questions.  In a recent article entitle Ireland: The Best Behaved Pupil? on the Policy Network website (State of the Left) I have argued that 'the great irony of recent months is that just as Ireland exits from the ‘bailout’ a public debate has begun on the merits of cutting …

We ignore the environment at our peril

Posted on January 17, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Environmental change has attracted growing concern over recent decades. The recent recession in most European states has diverted attention, temporarily to problems of debt, low-growth and under-utilisation of resources such as labour. Yet, the natural environment plays a huge role in shaping the lives and choices of humanity. It is beyond doubt that changes in the environment have been the …

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