Decision Maker Panel
The Decision Maker Panel was set up in August 2016 by the Bank of England, Stanford University and the University of Nottingham. It has been funded with over £5m of UKRI ESRC grants and additional support from Stanford and Bank of England.
It conducts monthly online surveys of over 10,000 CEO and CFOs, and is a significant data asset to the Bank, recognized by the Governor, Deputy Governors and Policy Committee members. This makes it a flagship ESRC project.
Our panel draws information from Financial Officers in UK companies operating in a broad range of industries and is designed to be representative of the population of UK businesses. The data and insights are shared with the Bank’s Policy Committees and we work closely with the Bank of England Agent Network, which makes regular visits to businesses across the UK. We also work with HM Treasury to evaluate the impact of tax policies on UK businesses. We were the runner up in the 2021 ESRC Celebrating Impact prize.
The Decision Maker Panel was set up in August 2016 by the Bank of England, Stanford University and the University of Nottingham. It provides direct insight into business expectations and uncertainty, for example Covid-19 and Brexit. Our panel draws information from Financial Officers in UK companies operating in a broad range of industries and is designed to be representative of the population of UK businesses.
In July 2016, Nick Bloom and Paul Mizen founded the Decision Maker Panel, and began telephone surveys with the Bank of England in August 2016, followed by online surveys in November 2016. The project has been funded by the Economic and Social Research Council since 2016.
The project generates three main types of output:
- Policy: The DMP makes a significant contribution to policymaking in the UK. Since 2016, the evidence collected has been used to brief members of the Monetary Policy Committee individually and collectively. Civil servants in 10 Downing Street, HM Treasury, the Department of Business Energy & Industrial Strategy, and the Home Office have used panel data to brief ministers.
- Research: We have written a series of research papers from this work details of which can be found here. Our initial work focused on Brexit since Brexit is in many ways the canonical uncertainty shock – large, partly unexpected, and long-lasting – so studying its impact will be invaluable for the field of economics. In 2020, the focus of our attention has shifted towards the business uncertainty around Covid-19, a recent summary can be found here. DMP is a valuable tool to assess many different types of business expectations and uncertainty.
- Data: We have summarized our data on the data page in aggregate, by sector and by firm size, found here. In the long term, we plan to make micro data available to other researchers with suitable anonymization or confidentiality protocols.
Thanks to the commitment of our participants, the size of the panel has been steadily increasing since the DMP was launched in August 2016. Approximately 10,800 businesses were part of the panel as of August 2023 and we are grateful to all panel members who have agreed to be part of the project.
To minimize the time commitment required to respond to the questions, each month we send one of three sets of questions to one third of the panel members.
Summary of Findings
The Decision Maker Panel has generated a number of research outputs which have later been published in academic journals, working paper series and blogs. The research has also been summarized in presentations delivered within international conferences and seminars.
Aggregated survey results are reported regularly in the Bank of England’s Inflation Report and the minutes of the Monetary Policy Committee meetings.
Our data has several advantages relative to outputs generated by other similar surveys for a number of reasons, thereby creating a valuable tool for assessing widespread business uncertainty.
Funding Body: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
Period: April 2023 - March 2026