David Bell

David Bell's picture
Professor
David
Bell
Organisation: 
University of Stirling
Phone Number: 
+44 (0)1786 467486
Email Address: 
Biography: 

Beliefs about how the Scottish economy may perform after independence will be critical to the outcome of the 2014 referendum on Scottish independence. Aside from its effect on income, another major concern for voters will be whether an independent Scottish economy will be able or wish to support the level of public services they currently enjoy. Taxpayers will want to know how taxes may change to pay for public services after independence.

This fellowship will produce original research looking at fiscal aspects of the constitutional change debate in the UK. It will encompass both taxes and spending, and will offer insights into questions such as: How would public services be funded in an independent Scotland? Would current levels of services – and the taxation that funds them – be similar, or vary up or down?

Fellowship website: Scottish Fiscal and Economic Studies (ScotFES)

Project Job Role: 
Professor of Economics

History

Blog
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Member for
5 years 7 months

Posts by this author:

The negotiations around adjustments to Scotland's block grant have been the subject of months of talks between the Scottish and UK governments. David Bell, David Eiser and David Phillips set out the main points of contention in this extended blog.    Introduction The UK and Scottish Governments have... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
The Scottish government’s block grant allocation between 2015-16 and 2020-21 was set in the 25th November spending review delivered by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Current spending will increase from £25.9 billion now, to £26.5 billion in 2019-20. This represents a 5% real cut (equivalent to £1.... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
The Scotland Bill, currently making its way through the Houses of Parliament, will transfer a range of tax and spending powers from Westminster to the Scottish Parliament. At the same time, an adjustment will have to be made to Scotland’s block grant funding from Westminster. Alongside things like c... Read more
Post type: Publication
Levels of EU migration to Scotland are lower than in the rest of the UK and, consequently says David Bell, issues relating to it are less likely to affect either side of the Brexit vote. Earlier this month, an article in the Daily Mail claimed that the UK workforce had increased by 430,000 in the l... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
A year on from the independence referendum, David Bell considers what's happened since, particularly in terms of the economy and economic powers. He also considers where Scotland would be now had the vote gone the other way. 
Post type: Publication
The Scotland Bill contains many new powers for the Scottish Government but those relating to welfare have been the focus of particular interest. Much has been said about how they might be changed or improved to develop a distinctively Scottish approach to social security. The legisltion sets out how... Read more
Post type: Publication
The devolution of various welfare powers to Scotland has led to speculation as to what a Scottish benefits system might look like. However, analysis from David Bell suggests that Holyrood may struggle to meet the bill for existing benefits in future years, let alone new ones.  The Scottish Parliamen... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
The Chancellor has used the Budget to limit the Scottish Government's room for manoeuvre, say David Bell, particularly through changes to Corporation Tax and the National Minimum Wage.   Once again, George Osborne has proved himself to be a clever politician.   Last year, he forced the Scottish Gove... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
David Bell looks at whether there exists a more stable fiscal settlement between Smith and Full Fiscal Autonomy. Following on from Monday's Part 1. So if FFA is off the agenda, what stable solution might exist to the vexed issue of Scotland’s fiscal powers? There may be no solution to this question,... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
David Bell looks at whether there exists a more stable fiscal settlement between Smith and Full Fiscal Autonomy. Part 2 to follow on Tuesday. Should David Cameron offer Nicola Sturgeon an immediate implementation of full fiscal autonomy (FFA) for Scotland when they meet soon to discuss the U.K.’s co... Read more
Post type: Blog entry

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Latest blogs

  • 19th February 2019

    Over the course of the UK’s preparations for withdrawing from the EU, the issue of the UK’s own internal market has emerged as an issue of concern, and one that has the potentially significant consequences for devolution. Dr Jo Hunt of Cardiff University examines the implications.

  • 12th February 2019

    CCC Fellow Professor Daniel Wincott of Cardiff University examines how Brexit processes have already reshaped territorial politics in the UK and changed its territorial constitution.

  • 7th February 2019

    The future of agriculture policy across the United Kingdom after Brexit is uncertain and risky, according to a new paper by Professor Michael Keating of the Centre on Constitutional Change. Reforms of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy over recent years have shifted the emphasis from farming to the broader concept of rural policy. As member states have gained more discretion in applying policy, the nations of the UK have also diverged, according to local conditions and preferences.

  • 4th February 2019

    In our latest report for the "Repatriation of Competences: Implications for Devolution" project, Professor Nicola McEwen and Dr Alexandra Remond examine how, in the longer term, Brexit poses significant risks for the climate and energy ambitions of the devolved nations. These include the loss of European Structural and Investment Funds targeted at climate and low carbon energy policies, from which the devolved territories have benefited disproportionately. European Investment Bank loan funding, which has financed high risk renewables projects, especially in Scotland, may also no longer be as accessible, while future access to research and innovation funding remains uncertain. The removal of the EU policy framework, which has incentivised the low carbon ambitions of the devolved nations may also result in lost opportunities.

  • 1st February 2019

    The outcome of the various Commons votes this week left certain only that the Government would either secure an amended deal and put it to a meaningful vote on Wednesday 13 February, or in the overwhelmingly likely absence of this make a further statement that day and table another amendable motion for the following day, the Groundhog Day that may lead to a ‘St Valentine’s Day Massacre’ for one side or the other. Richard Parry assesses the further two-week pause in parliamentary action on Brexit

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