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Commentary

The Institute publishes a series of 'Observations', which use our research to explain the facts behind topical policy debates. IFS staff also publish articles in a variety of national newspapers, blogs and specialist magazines to help inform the public debate.

For reports and academic publications, see our publications page.

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Latest Observations

Observation
Today the Social Metrics Commission has published its report on a new approach to poverty measurement in the UK. This observation summarises and discusses the work of the Commission and the conclusions that it reached.
Observation
The 2008 financial crisis precipitated what has proved to be a big and permanent hit to the size and structure of the UK economy. It affects our incomes and the tough choices we face today.
Observation
Today the Scottish Government released the latest version of Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS) covering 2017–18. In this observation we discuss what we can learn about Scotland’s fiscal position from these figures. And we look beyond the headline deficit figures to look at the ...

Recent newspaper articles

Newspaper article
A new poverty measure combines elements of the current absolute and relative measures by comparing incomes to a rolling three-year average of median incomes. So how many people are in poverty in the UK? Just over a fifth of the population, a fraction which appears to have changed little over the ...
Newspaper article
Whitehall and councils agree: new assessments of spending needs should be evidence-based and objective. But is that possible?
Newspaper article
When it comes to big decisions around Brexit and independence it is dangerous to pretend that the political choice does not require some serious economic choices too, says IFS Director Paul Johnson in The Times.