The Heathrow judgment: implications for new infrastructure schemes

The Court of Appeal has ruled that the UK government’s decision to provide policy support for a new runway at Heathrow was unlawful on environmental grounds (specifically, a failure by the government to consider the Paris Agreement). There has been speculation about what this means for other new infrastructure projects, which could be subject to challenge. From an economics perspective then, what are the key implications for evidencing the case for new infrastructure?

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Women in Economics

‘An equal world is an enabled world’ In honour of International Women’s Day 2020, which takes place on 8 March, this month’s Agenda podcast is dedicated to women in economics.

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RIIO-ED2 framework decision

This note summarises the key aspects of the RIIO-ED2 framework decision; outlines the key strategic issues facing the sector that Ofgem is considering; and provides a commentary on what this means for companies, based on Oxera’s initial review of the document.

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Ofwat’s PR19 Final Determinations

Ofwat published its final determinations (FDs) for the England and Wales water sector at 07.00 on 16 December 2019. There are many documents and a lot of detail that the industry will need to pore over in order to understand the implications. Here we explore the three main contentious issues in the sector: finance, cost efficiency and outcome delivery incentives (ODIs). We take an initial look at what has changed since the draft determinations (DDs), published earlier in the year.

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Investment promises from politicians—should we believe them?

As the UK general election approaches, voters are being seduced by promises from all the parties about how much they will invest in improving the nation’s infrastructure over the next Parliament. What should we make of these promises? This question is not just about political credibility (or even honesty); it has a hard economic edge. The injection of a slew of new major and minor projects would have implications for the quality of public services, employment, inflation, taxation and government debt. It is worth asking ourselves how much of this spending will actually happen—and when.

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Why is Black Friday growing in Europe?

Black Friday was born in the USA, but recent years have seen the sales event become a phenomenon in Europe. Across Belgium, France, Germany, Italy the Netherlands, and the UK, sales on Black Friday are now over double the...

Big data and AI: risks and opportunities for insurers

Big data and artificial intelligence are sweeping through the European insurance industry, with insurers facing competitive pressure to adopt innovative techniques. In response, regulators such as EIOPA are highlighting risks arising from big data and AI, and the critical...

Beyond the Bottom Line

What society expects from business is evolving rapidly. New business models mean that intermediaries are being removed and traditional value chains are being disrupted. Advances in AI and automation are having profound effects on employment. Communities are exerting enormous...

The evolution of UK energy regulation

As the UK energy sector undergoes rapid technological transformation, the tools and frameworks that are being used by policymakers and regulators in the sector are also evolving. Ofgem’s RIIO2 network price control reviews are underway, with a framework decision published at the end of July and sector-specific methodology consultations due to be published by December 2018.

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