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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.

We need to talk about wages

Posted on November 25, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Did you know that wages – as measured by real average weekly earnings – have not increased since 2008 in the Republic of Ireland ?  Never mind the Great Leap forward in GDP last year or the rapid and very welcome growth in employment (continuing to run at an annualised rate of close to 3%).   A release of data on wages is not accompanied by a media one-day major focus such as happens in …

A new world is emerging

Posted on November 18, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
What a year it has been so far.   The phrase used by the exiting Margaret Thatcher in 1990, ‘It’s a funny old world’, springs to mind in considering the fall-out from a referendum in the UK and a presidential election in the USA. However, the matter is far from funny. The immediate causes and impacts will be debated for years. The elections of Margaret Thatcher in 1979 and Ronald Reagan …

A note on the role of multinational companies in the Food Manufacture sector in the Republic of Ireland.

Posted on November 10, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
In an earlier post I contrasted some measures of productivity in food manufacture [A Tale of Two Cities]. The Republic of Ireland stands out as having the highest gross value added per employee in 2012 amongst EU Member States.  Clearly something is odd with this.  The clue lies in a further distinction within this sector between home-owned enterprises and foreign-owned enterprises. In 2012 …

Cherishing the children's teeth equally?

Posted on November 04, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The term ‘social wage’ is sometimes used to refer to those public goods and services consumed by workers and their families.  Apart from wages earned over a given period we enjoy the benefits of ‘free’ or heavily subsidised services in areas such as education and health (although the balance has changed over time and is tilted towards private sources in the Republic of Ireland relative …

A Tale of Two Cities

Posted on October 28, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” – the opening line of Charles Dicken’s The Tale of Two Cities is a familiar one. It could be applied to the fall-out from the ‘Brexit’ vote in the UK on 23 rd June. If UK policy makers, analysts and the general public were not exactly prepared and informed for what would happen, what of Irish policy makers, analysts and the general …

Getting ready for Brexit

Posted on October 21, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The prospect of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union presents a once-in-a-generation challenge for the Northern Ireland Executive, the Irish Government and citizens across this island.  A recent paper by economists at the Department of Finance [UK EU Exit – An Exposure Analysis of Sectors of the Irish Economy] summarises the situation facing producers south of the border in a very …

Budget 2017 - the good, the bad and the ugly

Posted on October 16, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The draft budget for 2017 for the Republic of Ireland will now be submitted to the European Commission for approval. In the meantime, the real work in relation to the implementation of Budget 2017 proposals will involve various deliberations and discussions leading to the Finance Bill in a number of weeks as well as various initiatives and announcements on foot of the proposals in ‘Budget …

The 'squeezed middle' ?

Posted on October 06, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The squeezed middle is one of those terms that has entered popular discourse in Ireland as well as abroad. Political and media pundits refer, at ease, to the ‘squeezed middle’ who are said to have borne the brunt of the recent recession or fiscal austerity and have lost out compared to those on lower incomes or those on very high incomes.  The problem is twofold: (i) nearly everyone in the …

Tax heresies and half-baked truths

Posted on October 01, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Every heresy begins with a half-baked truth.  Recent weeks have seen claims that the overall level of personal taxation in the Republic of Ireland is too high and that particular groups have been unduly burdened especially since the onset of fiscal austerity in 2009.  Certainly, taxes were increased over the period from 2009 to 2013.  However, many commentators do not point out that very …

What sort of future for Europe?

Posted on September 22, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Terms like ‘staying in Europe’, ‘pulling out of Europe’, ‘the European project’ and similar expressions are dispensed liberally in popular discourse. The last time I checked a map, Europe comprised a lot of people form Achill in the west of Ireland to Kharyaginskiy in Russia where it is already Monday evening. The fact is that Europe is all 745 million living in this continent with …

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