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Private greed, political negligence and housing policy after Grenfell

As the tragedy of the Grenfell Tower fire of 14 June 2017 has slowly revealed a shadowy background of outsourcing and deregulation, and a council turning a blind eye to health and safety concerns, many questions need answers. Stuart Hodkinson has those answers. Safe as Houses weaves together Stuart’s research over the last decade with residents’ groups in council regeneration projects across London to provide the first comprehensive account of how Grenfell happened and how it could easily have happened in multiple locations across the country. It draws on examples of unsafe housing either refurbished or built by private companies under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) to show both the terrible human consequences of outsourcing and deregulation and how the PFI has enabled developers, banks and investors to profiteer from highly lucrative, taxpayer-funded contracts. The book also provides shocking testimonies of how councils and other public bodies have continuously sided with their private partners, doing everything in their power to ignore, deflect and even silence those who speak out. The book concludes that the only way to end the era of unsafe regeneration and housing provision is to end the disastrous regime of self-regulation. This means strengthening safety laws, creating new enforcement agencies independent of government and industry, and replacing PFI and similar models of outsourcing with a new model of public housing that treats the provision of shelter as ‘a social service’ democratically accountable to its residents.

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Aeron Davis

made in Joe Earle et al. (2016) The Econocracy: The Perils of Leaving Economics to the Experts , Manchester: Manchester University Press. 16 OFT was the Office of Fair Trading, running from 1973 to 2014. Now part of the Financial Conduct Authority.

in Reckless opportunists
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Ariane Agunsoye, Michelle Groenewald, and Danielle Guizzo

Note: To explore different economic perspectives in more depth, see the Exploring Economics website. Available at (accessed 13 June 2021). Source: based on a table in Earle, Moran and Ward-Perkins, The Econocracy, inspired by a similar table in Ha-Joon Chang, Economics: The

in Reclaiming economics for future generations
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Ariane Agunsoye, Michelle Groenewald, Danielle Guizzo, and Kamal Ramburuth-Hurt

that their ideas garnered greater criticism than the men in their cohort. These experiences must be surfaced, discussed and addressed. How do we assess? Research presented in The Econocracy 20 shows the ubiquity of multiple-choice questions in economics education. How can we ensure that students are given more opportunities to write essays to

in Reclaiming economics for future generations
Alex Schafran, Matthew Noah Smith, and Stephen Hall

more true if we move beyond resource-intensive reliance systems to ones based more in human capital, for example healthcare, education, media, policing, etc. 38 See also A. Bowman, I. Ertürk, J. Froud, S. Johal and J. Law, The End of the Experiment? From Competition to the Foundational Economy (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2014), and J. Earle, C. Moran and Z. Ward-Perkins, The Econocracy (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2016). 39 See A. Schafran, The Road to Resegregation: Northern California and the Failure of

in The spatial contract