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Blanchflower wraps up his term on the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee

Dartmouth College Office of Public Affairs • Press Release
Posted 06/09/09 • Media Contact: Susan Knapp (603) 646-3661

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David Blanchflower
Dartmouth economics professor David "Danny" Blanchflower (photo by Joseph Mehling '69)

Dartmouth Professor David “Danny” Blanchflower knows that the immediate outlook for the UK labor market is grim. For the past three years, he’s been a member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), and he’s been on the front lines of guiding economic policy in the UK.

“The current unemployment data are terrible,” said Blanchflower, the Bruce V. Rauner Professor of Economics at Dartmouth. “I have recommended implementing strong fiscal programs that stimulate job creation targeted on the young.”

Blanchflower’s term on the MPC has come to an end; his last meeting was on May 6-7, and his official stint with the committee ended on May 31. During his MPC tenure, he’s been sought by journalists and often quoted in UK newspapers, and he’s met with UK’s political and economic leaders.

For example, on March 23, he addressed Parliament with fellow economist Will Hutton, executive vice-chair of The Work Foundation, an independent research consultancy organization focused on the quality of working life. Blanchflower presented a joint paper with David Bell, professor at the University of Stirling, titled “What should be done about the rising unemployment in the UK?” The goal of the invited talk was to engage members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords in a discussion of a variety of policy options that could stimulate job growth.

“It was an honor to be invited to talk to Parliament, and I know that improving the labor market will be one of Parliament’s top economic concerns for the foreseeable future,” said Blanchflower. “Prolonged high unemployment has long-term repercussions, not only for individuals, but also for the prospects of a healthy recovery.”

News outlets are also taking notice of Blanchflower’s service on the MPC. On March 25, The UK’s The Guardian, in an editorial titled, “In praise of…. David Blanchflower” said, “[The] combination of intellectual pedigree and plain common sense will be much missed when he steps down from the MPC this spring.”

Other recent news commentary:

“Blanchflower established himself as an arch-dove after joining the MPC in June 2006. In the face of rising inflation, he opposed rate rises, voted for cuts, and was often the only dissenting voice.” London Evening Standard, UK May 5, 2009

“The professor also expresses concern over where in the economy new growth and jobs will come from once the recession is over.” Times Online, UK, May 28, 2009

“An outspoken and iconoclastic figure who has brought a dash of colour to the grey corridors of the Bank, Mr Blanchflower has a voting record on the MPC that is ample testimony to his having been proved right.” Times Online, UK, May 28 2009

“In important ways, then, Blanchflower has been a vital thorn in the side of government, the central bank and the financial and academic establishment, and for that reason alone he will be sorely missed.” Citywire, UK, May 29, 2009

“The Bank of England official who warned of recession has said that the worst of the downturn is not over and signs of improvement may be "false dawns".” BBC News, June 1, 2009

And Blanchflower wrote in a June 8, 2009 opinion article for the UK’s The Guardian, “For a long while I was treated as something of a pariah. The arch-dove: the uber-dove.”

“I am keenly aware that during this global economic crisis, my time on the MPC was historic,” said Blanchflower. “It was a privilege to have been an integral part of democracy in action.”

Dartmouth has television (satellite uplink) and radio (ISDN) studios available for domestic and international live and taped interviews. For more information, call 603-646-3661 or see our Radio, Television capability webpage.

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Last Updated: 9/14/09