Fraser of Allander Institute

Department of EconomicsFraser of Allander Institute (FAI)

Scotland’s Economic Future: Disruptive Ideas

  • The Fraser of Allander Institute (FAI) is delighted to support a new series of papers – ‘Scotland’s Economic Future: Disruptive Ideas’.  The aim of the series is to help stimulate a fresh debate into economic policy in Scotland, with a range of contributions from economists, policy experts and commentators.

    The series has been conceived and coordinated by Alison Hunter and Fabian Zuleeg. The FAI is providing support in the dissemination of outputs. All content, opinion and commentary are those of the authors and not the FAI.

    Professor Graeme Roy,
    Director Fraser of Allander Institute,
    February 2020

‘Scotland’s Economic Future: Disruptive Ideas’ is a paper series conceived and coordinated by Alison Hunter and Fabian Zuleeg. Together with a group of economic experts, policy analysts and commentators from Scotland and beyond, the papers have been developed entirely on a voluntary basis. Each paper presents the views of the individual writer concerning Scotland’s economic future at a time of significant global and domestic change and uncertainty.

While covering a wide range of topics from institutional reform to immigration, the papers share a vision for Scotland to make greater strides towards a resilient, economic future.

The papers aspire to the following aims:

  1. To generate a fresh, apolitical and inclusive debate concerning Scotland’s economic future
  2. To support the process of new/revised policy adoption and new ‘ways of working’ which can be injected into Scottish life and society, with the aim of generating a better future for Scotland’s citizens
  3. To focus – at least initially – on a core set of themes linked to Scotland’s economic development and to inject ‘disruptive’ thinking into the debate


Institutions, Transition and National Renewal: The Case for a New Scottish Approach
Dr Robert Pollock

This paper contends that a redesign of Scotland’s institutional system of governance is needed to promote national socio-economic development and a new economic model based on energy transition. Moreover, such reform is required to increase national resilience and responsiveness in a time of profound environmental change. To address the challenges and opportunities of transition to a net-zero carbon economy, this paper proposes key institutional changes to engender requisite collective and collaborative discourse, planning and action. Although independence would provide Scotland with additional powers, an evident rationale exists for institutional reform irrespective of the impending constitutional reckoning in order to respond to climate change in a manner that creates a more equitable, sustainable and productive economy.

A Statistical Test of Independence
Richard Marsh

This paper considers the current system of statistics in Scotland and provides a number of options and recommendations that would improve it. Beyond the technical benefits this would offer, there is also significant scope to improve Scotland’s approach to economic policy development and evaluation. At the core of this paper, a case is made for an independent Scottish Statistics Agency, led by a Chief Statistician.


Alison Hunter

Alison Hunter is director and joint owner of the Economic and Public Policy Consultancy, a Brussels-based business. With a background in Scottish economic development, Alison has been working in Brussels since 2007 on EU regional, innovation and industrial growth policy. She is also senior adviser to the European Policy Centre on these areas as well as a board member of a Brussels-based research lab - European Future Innovation System Centre (EFIS).

Dr Fabian Zuleeg

Dr Fabian Zuleeg is Chief Executive and Chief Economist of the European Policy Centre. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Edinburgh Europa Institute, Visiting Professor with Heriot-Watt University and Advisory Board Member of the Scottish Centre on European Relations. Prior to moving to Brussels in 2007, Fabian worked in Scotland with the (then) Scottish Executive, as well as an economic consultancy.


Fraser of Allander Institute
Strathclyde Business School
University of Strathclyde
199 Cathedral Street
G4 0QU

Triple accredited

AACSB, AMBA and Equis logos
Winner THE 2016 Business School of the year logo