Skip to main content

23 February 2021

Finding 'Global Britain': political slogan to hard economic policy choices

What does the phrase ‘Global Britain’ mean and what choices does the UK face post-Brexit?

What does the future look like for the UK outside the EU?

A new paper co-authored by former shadow chancellor Ed Balls and academics from Harvard University seeks to address those questions by setting out the choices facing the government as it attempts to transform a political slogan into workable set of policies.

The paper focusses on five areas which the authors believe will be key for the future: trade, regulation, migration, ‘levelling up’ and the UK's global narrative.

Ed, who is professor of political economy at King’s, said: “If Britain is going to be effective on the world stage and if ‘Global Britain’ is to be a reality, the focus has to be on bringing people together, on listening, and learning. Simply going our own way and thinking we know best won’t work.

“As the UK takes its first steps into the post-Brexit world, the government will be faced with a series of choices in key areas of policy that will shape how we are seen on the world stage and whether we remain an influential voice around the top table.

“This paper sets out where those choices lie and, for perhaps the first time, gives a sense of what Global Britain might mean.”

Ed co-authored the paper with Nyasha Weinberg, Jessica Redmond, Sechi Kailasa, and Tommaso Cariati, all from the Harvard Kennedy School.

The paper is being launched in collaboration with Harvard’s Mossavar-Rahmani Centre for Business and Government at an event hosted online by King’s Strand Group on 23 February, from 18.00 – 19.30.

Discussing the paper will be Lord Jo Johnson, King’s College professor and former cabinet minister, Lord Nicholas Macpherson, King’s College visiting professor and former treasury permanent secretary, and Emily Thornberry, MP and shadow trade minister.

You can find out more about the event and sign-up here.