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Productivity and exports – how SMART planning can resolve the UK’s two most serious economic crises

Blake, D. ORCID: 0000-0002-2453-2090 (2023). Productivity and exports – how SMART planning can resolve the UK’s two most serious economic crises. London, UK: City, Univeristy of London.


The UK faces both a productivity crisis and an export crisis which will permanently lower real living standards unless they are fixed soon. Skills (especially vocational) training is inadequate and significant numbers of working age people are on welfare benefits for health reasons. Companies have not spent sufficiently on research and development and have not invested sufficiently in productivity-enhancing capital. There is a long tail of inefficient firms that are poorly managed. The UK has failed to capitalise on its comparative advantage when it comes to exporting, namely in high tech manufacturing and services, especially digital, financial and business services and life sciences. Government policy has been characterised by over-centralisation, weak and ineffective institutions and policy churn, institutional and policy silos, as well as short-termism and poor policy coordination. The solution is SMART planning which builds on the lessons of behavioural psychology and behavioural economics. SMART plans are manifestos that act as both commitment and support devices. The government must introduce a national strategy for productivity and exports. The strategy should be implemented using SMART plans for workers, companies, exporters and government – designed to overcome the barriers and hurdles that each group faces in increasing productivity and exports.

Publication Type: Report
Additional Information: ©The author, 2023.
Publisher Keywords: productivity, exports, behavioural psychology, behavioural economics, SMART plans
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HG Finance
H Social Sciences > HJ Public Finance
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Departments: Bayes Business School > Finance
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