What she does outside the Panel
Outside the Panel Pamela does research and consultancy related to the labour market (including pensions) and the economics of social disadvantage (including financial exclusion). She is a Visiting Fellow at the National Institute of Economic and Social Research and a Director of Synergy Research and Consulting.
Positions held in the past
She was previously director of the Policy Studies Institute, and before that spent nearly twenty years as a government economist in both the Home Office and the Department of Employment, where she was Chief Economist and Head of Economics, Research and Evaluation.
Reasons for joining the Panel
As an applied micro-economist I have a long-standing interest in the issue of market failure and how it can produce outcomes which are sub-optimal, being neither efficient nor equitable. In my research on the issue of financial exclusion it became clear that one of the underlying causes was information failure - financial institutions did not necessarily realise that they already served many socially disadvantaged people but on the demand side those who were not accessing financial services did not have access to information about the services because they belonged to social networks where usage was limited. There are other important potential obstacles to optimal outcomes in retail financial services markets, the most obvious being asymmetries of information between buyer and seller (particularly but not only with respect to risk), uncertainty about the future, and differing interests of consumers and intermediaries (the "Principal-Agent Problem").
Areas of particular interest on the Panel
Financial exclusion, The role of intermediaries, Saving for retirement (including, but not confined to pensions)
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