University of Glasgow academics appointed to new SNP Growth Commission

Two University academics have been appointed to the new SNP Growth Commission. They are Iain Docherty, Professor of Public Policy and Governance, and Catherine Schenk, Professor of International Economic History.

The Commission will explore options to grow Scotland’s economy in the wake of the EU referendum and consider how to generate further growth with the powers of independence.

The 14-member panel includes leading Scottish business figures, renowned economists and politicians – and is chaired by former SNP MSP Andrew Wilson.

While the work undertaken by the Commission is intended to inform SNP policy, it will seek a wide range of views from across the political spectrum and from business and civic society. The Commission will report directly to the First Minister.

Members of the Commission are taking part in a personal capacity and membership of the Commission does not indicate support or membership of the SNP. Economic and Secretariat support will be provided by Graeme Blackett of Biggar Economics.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Scotland is a wealthy country with resources and talents that many other countries can only dream about. The challenge, however, lies in closing the gap between our potential and the reality.
“We want to strengthen our foundations and seek to identify the very best opportunities for Scotland’s economy to flourish.”

She added: “The Commission’s work will inform our thinking in the here and now – how we sustain growth during the period of uncertainty caused by Brexit – but will also examine projections for Scotland’s finances and proposals for growth in the context of independence. That work will include considering policies to grow the economy and reduce Scotland’s deficit and looking at the monetary arrangements which would best underpin a strategy for sustainable growth.”

The Commission will assess the projections for Scotland’s economy and public finances, consider the implications for our economy and finances of different potential governance scenarios, and make recommendations for policy on:

  • Measures to boost economic growth and improve Scotland’s public finances – both now in the aftermath of the EU referendum and in the context of independence;
  • The potential for and best use of savings from UK programmes in the event of independence, such as Trident;
  • The range of transitional cost and benefits associated with independence and arrangements for dealing with future revenue windfalls, including future North Sea Revenues.

In addition, the Commission will take account of the recommendations of the 2013 Fiscal Commission reports, and the outcome of the EU referendum, and consider the most appropriate monetary policy arrangements to underpin a programme for sustainable growth in an independent Scotland.

The full membership of the SNP’s Growth Commission is:

  • Andrew Wilson (Chair), former SNP MSP and Economy and Finance spokesperson, Founding Partner, Charlotte St Partners;
  • Councillor Marie Burns , Shadow Economy and Communities Spokesperson, North Ayrshire Council;
  • Professor Iain Docherty, Professor of Public Policy and Governance, University of Glasgow;
  • Kate Forbes, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch;
  • Professor Andrew Hughes Hallet, Professor of Economics and Public Policy, George Mason University and University of St Andrews;
  • Dan McDonald, Businessman and Founder of N56 group;
  • Derek MacKay MSP, Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Finance;
  • Marie Macklin CBE, Chief Executive of the Klin Group and Macklin Enterprise Partnership;
  • Jim Mather, Former Enterprise Minister and Visiting Professor at the University of Strathclyde and Heriot Watt University;
  • Roger Mullin MP, SNP Westminster Finance Spokesperson;
  • Professor Catherine Schenk, Professor of International Economic History, University of Glasgow;
  • Mark Shaw, Chief Executive, Hazledene;
  • Shirley-Anne Somerville, Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science;
  • Petra Wetzel, Founder and Managing Director WEST Brewery.

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