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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.

A worrying trend in wages

Posted on April 01, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
I bet you are perplexed by the title. Read on.  Since the 1980s wages have declined sharply as a proportion of total income in the Republic of Ireland. While total income or production (GDP, GNI or GVA as you wish) has grown dramatically since the early 1990s the share of wages in the total cake as declined. The Republic of Ireland is not unique by any means. In other major economies – notably …

Easter Musings

Posted on March 24, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
In the course of a decade and a year of commemorations there has been much discussion and consideration about the past.  Difficult issues and questions are negotiated and depending on which tradition one tends to associate with, particular emphasis will be placed on certain events or certain interpretations.  Learning from the past is important and not to be avoided.  Looking to the future has …

Women in the workforce, low pay and the cost of early childhood care and education.

Posted on March 18, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Inequality of pay between women and men is a well documented statistical fact. But, what is the relationship between this gender gap and low pay?  How is early childhood care relevant? And what are the implications for public policy and trade unions?  This Blog looks at these questions in the Republic of Ireland against a background of three important documents that entered the public domain …

Thinking aloud about Brexit

Posted on January 15, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
2016 will be dominated, among other things, by the British question.  The word ‘Brexit’ has been added to the English language.  As everyone knows by now it would mean the UK (and that includes Northern Ireland) leaving the European Union following a referendum later this year.  Historically, the island of Britain has always displayed a singular approach in international affairs possibly …

Public Sector reform

Posted on January 08, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Public sector reform is an expression that falls lightly into the lap of public discourse. Everyone speaks up for ‘public sector reform’ and few if any would disagree that the sector needs constant reforming and improvement. That said, I can’t remember the last time I heard the expression ‘private sector reform’.  Yet, the genesis of the recent economic crash globally as well as …

Looking to an enterprising new year at the NERI

Posted on January 01, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Happy new year!  The issues of happiness, sustainability and well-being will continue to exercise our attention in 2016. Regrettably Gross Domestic Product measures only some things while neglecting others. Worse still, some components of GDP may be inflated by negative human behaviour while adding nothing to human well-being. In the coming year we are likely to see rising concern about the …

A tale of two economies (or three?)

Posted on December 19, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Paradoxically, since the 1990’s consideration of all-island or all-Ireland economic issues has fallen by the way. True, the peace process and associated mechanisms have continued to highlight the importance of cross-border trade and cooperation. These matters attract almost universal support and interest across various political spectrums, North and South. In other words, interest in all-island …

An insecure age

Posted on December 12, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Being ‘young’ today is the same and not the same as it used to be 50 years ago. It is the same because it tends to be associated with growth, development, opportunity, challenge, rupture …. It is not the same because the world as we know it has changed dramatically in the space of two generations. The evidence is clear that standards and levels of education, housing, health and income are a …

Nothing comes from nothing: the case of health

Posted on December 06, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Health is better than gold or ‘is fearr an tsláinte ná an t-ór’ as the saying goes in Irish. Economists and statisticians tend to think of health as a cost as well as a sphere of activity involving consumption of resources in the present time. Health, however, has two dimensions: (i) It is a state of well-being for which all strive because it concerns body and mind and goes beyond narrow …

Posted in: Government SpendingNorthern Ireland Taxation

What is a prudent fiscal space?

Posted on November 29, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
One of the impacts of the recent economic crisis is that new expressions have been added to the English language, as spoken here. One such example is ‘fiscal space’. When the economy is growing there is, at one and the same time, more demand for public services (more school pupils and more demand for health services for examlpe) as well as less demand for other public services (when there are …

Posted in: Government SpendingInvestmentTaxation

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