Professor Sir Tim Besley appointed to advise UK government

By Aditya A.

Sir Tim Besley, the School Professor of Economics and Political Science and Sir W. Arthur Lewis Professor of Development Economics at the LSE, has been appointed to the British government’s Levelling Up Advisory Council. 

On 2 February, the Government released a white paper entitled “Levelling Up the United Kingdom”, which laid out a detailed plan to alleviate regional inequalities in Britain. The paper named Professor Besley as one of a handful of business people and academics who will be advising the government on major policy issues to remedy uneven development patterns in the country.  

As part of the Levelling Up Advisory Council, Professor Besley will be providing independent advice to the government on the design and delivery of schemes aimed at reducing regional inequalities in Britain. Others who have been appointed as advisors include Sally Mapstone, Principal of the University of St Andrews, and Sir Paul Collier, Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford. 

Professor Besley stated: “There are significant and entrenched inequalities between and within regions of the UK that need urgently to be addressed. If we are to create sustainable change, policymakers will need to consider many factors, including infrastructure, education, healthcare, skills and housing. I am pleased to be contributing to the government’s work to address these key issues and look forward to the work ahead.” 

Professor Susana Mourato, Pro-Director of Research at the LSE, has also commented on Professor Besley’s achievement: “Regional inequality in the UK is not a new problem but it is a hugely significant one, leading to typically lower education, health and economic outcomes for those living in more deprived areas…I am delighted that Professor Sir Tim Besley will be advising [the] government on this issue.”

Alongside a distinguished career in teaching, Professor Besley has served as a consultant to international economic organisations including the World Bank. He has also edited numerous economics journals such as the American Economic Review and the Quarterly Journal of Economics. 

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