Fourth Sheffield Workshop in Political Economy
Earlier this month the fourth Sheffield Workshop in Political Economy was held, bringing together economists and political scientists to discuss recent advances in political economy. The workshop was organised by the Political Economy Research Group (PERG), which is an interdisciplinary research cluster with members from the Economics and Politics departments.
Keynote speaker Professor Tim Besley who was recently knighted for his services to economics and public policy, drew a large audience with his presentation on the theme of politics and values.
Tim opened his presentation by stating the importance of researching political economy because it analyses public policy and the constraints made on policy making.
His presentation outlined how studying the preferences and values of people can affect their voting intentions and support for different political parties.
Political economy analyses public policy and the constraints made on policy making.
Professor tim besley (London School of Economics)
He went onto present evidence on how minority viewpoints, such as environmentalism, can influence policy making. His view was the most effective strategy for environmentalists to influence policy is to vote for the main political parties with the best environmental policies, rather than vote for the smaller environmental political party. In other words, make the larger political parties court the environmental vote.
Other presentations at the workshop analysed topics on: the impact of term limits at the local government level on voter turnout; the effect of new information technologies on local electoral accountability; the effect of the Voting Reform Act (VRA) signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson on 1965 on black’s representation in the US; the relationship between military academies and coup risk; the extent to which Chinese aid affects economic growth in recipient countries around the world; and how family history can influence current attitudes toward outgroups.
In attendance at the workshop were PhD students, researchers and academics from all over the UK and Europe.