Follow us
Publications Commentary Research People Events News Resources and Videos About IFS
Home Publications Firms, market power, innovation and inequality

Firms, market power, innovation and inequality


You can download the event slides below: 

Firms are at the centre of our economy: they make the things we buy, set prices, invent new things and provide jobs. They also differ widely in their size, their productivity, their innovativeness, and the wages and conditions they offer.

To what extent have UK firms become more widely varying in their productivity and wage levels, as has been seen in the US? What are the likely implications for wage inequality across individuals and for overall productivity? What has been happening to the market power enjoyed by firms, and with what implications for the prices that they charge consumers and the wages that they pay workers? What is the role of firm-level innovation in creating ‘good jobs’ and driving social mobility on the one hand, and creating rents and market power which drive up and entrench income inequality on the other? How can policy towards firms and competition strike the right balance in the face of these forces?

These are some of the key questions our expert panel addressed at this event.

This event was chaired by Paul Johnson, IFS, and featured talks from:

  • Jan Eeckhout, UPF Barcelona
  • Rachel Griffith, IFS and University of Manchester
  • John van Reenen, LSE
  • Jean Tirole, Toulouse School of Economics
Deaton inequality website

More on this topic

IFS Working Paper W22/26
We spotlight some of the newer directions in intergenerational mobility research within economics driven by changes in some key trends in the recent decades, as well as growing availability of administrative data.
Book chapter
Families play a fundamental role in nurturing, socialising and supporting children until at least they become independent, and they in turn become the citizens, workers and parents of tomorrow.
Press release
Inequalities in the early cognitive, social and emotional development of children in the UK, which are so important in shaping later life outcomes, have changed little between those born in the early 2000s and those born in the early 2010s.
Through the lottery of birth, children are born into different socio-economic circumstances and grow up in environments that are remarkably different from each other. This report looks at inequalities in early childhood in the UK.