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Economics seminar series - Inflation: Price Shocks, Profits and Conflict

Thursday, February 22, 2024 - 13:00 to 14:30
Online, via Microsoft Teams


Inflation in the UK reached their highest rates in 2022 and 2023 for three decades, putting an end to over a decade of historically low interest rates and pushing many into a cost of living crisis with poverty deepening for many.

Despite its prominence in recent political debate, public understanding of the causes and consequences of inflation remain partial and often cantered around and old conservative doctrine of the wage/price spiral.

Drawing from recent publications, the seminar explores evidence based understanding of recent hikes in inflation and the distributional conflict between wages and profit that ensue.

Rethinking Economics International logo

The Open University Economics Seminar Series and Rethinking Economics International are pleased to be hosting Rafael Wildauer (Greenwich University), Christine Berry (Joseph Rowntree Foundation) and Laurence Jones-Williams (Rethinking Economics International). The event will be chaired by Susan Newman (The Open University).

Inflation Price Shocks Profits and Conflict

On 22 February, OU Economics and Rethinking Economics had the pleasure to hear from Rafael Wildauer (minutes 4:07-26:46), Christine Berry (27:15-39:25) and Lawrence Jones-Williams (39:45-51:27) as they were sharing their insights on the topic of inflation, price shocks and profits. Their interventions were followed by Q&A (from minute 51:27 onwards).


Profile of Rafael

Rafael Wildauer is an Associate Professor in Economics at Greenwich Business School in London. His research focuses on the distribution of income and wealth, measuring and modelling the heavy tails of these distributions, tax revenue modelling, Post-Keynesian macroeconomic models of growth and distribution, and the transformation towards carbon neutral economies. In addition to peer-reviewed publications in these areas, Rafael has worked with the Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS) and the Vienna Chamber of Labour (AK) to estimate the revenue potential of a European wealth tax and its ability to close the EU’s green investment gap. He is deputy director of the Institute of Political Economy, Governance, Finance and Accountability (PEGFA) at the University of Greenwich and a board member of the Post-Keynesian Economics Society (PKES). A full list of Dr Wildauer’s publications and presentations can be found on his personal webpage.

Profile of Christine

Christine Berry is a communicator, thinker and changemaker based in Manchester. Christine’s recent work has focussed on how we can build a more democratic economy, and in particular on the need to democratise ownership. She has been described by the Guardian as “one of the central figures” in the new economics, and her work has also been covered by the Economist, the Financial Times and various other major newspapers. She is currently working part-time with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation alongside completing her first solo book, Owned, published by Verso Books. Other hats include Associate Fellow of IPPR North, Senior Fellow of the Finance Innovation Lab and Associate Fellow of Abundance.

Profile of Laurence

Laurence Jones-Williams is Director of Rethinking Economics International, a global charity working to transform economics education for people and planet. He has been with Rethinking Economics for the past 6 years and has overseen its growth to over 120 groups in over 30 countries, with 1,000s of students becoming rethinkers and over 10 major changes to economics curricula. Laurence also co-founded the Greater Manchester Tenants Union, previously studied Mathematics and Physics and is in his final year of a Masters in Leadership accredited by Essex University.

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