Traditional economic thinking is centred on the notion of economies returning to an equilibrium, and it lacks any great understanding of the dynamics of economic change. A modern industrial strategy - designed to support growth in the private sector so that the UK can reduce, or even eliminate, its trade deficit and return to full employment as swiftly as possible - will have to draw on new ways of thinking about the economy.
It will also have to be based on a vision of what the economy might look like in 2020. Such a vision is unlikely to be right in every detail, but it is necessary to recognise some of the major trends that will occur over the next decade - such as the ageing of the population and the continued development of emerging economies - and the trends that we might wish to see in the UK economy - better balanced growth - and to identify what needs to happen, by way of investment in infrastructure and skills for example, to bring about the desired outcome.
This survey of the state of the British economy focuses not only on how to promote growth but also the macro challenges ahead - including globalisation and massive technological change - structural issues within the UK economy, a range of supply-side issues such as productivity, innovation and skills, and the economic disparaties, regional and societal, that both reflect the state of the economy and present risks for its recovery.
Snakes and ladders: Tackling precarity in social security and employment supportAcross the country, people are trying to make ends meet, build financial security and pursue their aspirations. But, in a vicious cycle of snakes and ladders, many are being pulled down into poverty.
Making markets: The City's role in industrial strategyTo tackle climate change, we need a significant increase in public and private capital investment.
Broken hearted: A spotlight paper on cardiovascular diseaseProgress on cardiovascular disease was a significant driver of better health and prosperity in the latter half of the 20th century, however progress has recently stalled – with indications it may be in reverse.