The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

Preview: Budget ‘Hack’ Day

As we prepare for our first Budget since Brexit was decided, Policy@Manchester are holding a Budget ‘Hack’ Day with a live stream and expert speakers to advise us on what’s coming next

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On Wednesday 8th March, Philip Hammond will address the nation with his first Budget since he was appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer. In conjunction, Policy@Manchester are hosting their Budget ‘Hack’ Day, new this year, in Club Academy of the Students’ Union from 10am to 4pm.

Advertised as a ‘drop-in’ session, students and staff from the university are encouraged to attend the event, which will be hosting a live stream of the Budget, due to commence at 12:30pm.

From 10:30am external speakers, or ‘provocateurs’, will be giving their expertise and opinions on the forthcoming Budget, and its implications in their field of interest. They are there not only to be listened to and learned from, but to spark some discussion, and hopefully debate, amongst the audience.

Professor Andy Westwood, co-director of Policy@Manchester, will also speaking, alongside Angeliki Stogia, Whalley Range Labour Councillor and Head of Partnerships and Development at Discuss Manchester.

The organiser, Professor Westwood, said of the event: “We’ll be showing the Budget live, listening to some of the reactions and hearing from some key people at the university and in the city as we all try and get our heads round what this Budget means.”

Insiders are already predicting many of the aspects of Hammond’s Budget, including a £15.7 billion decrease in public borrowing, compared to this current financial year. As expected, many also believe that the value of the pound will continue to fall and economic growth will slow in the wake of Brexit.

“It’s our job to think and write about big issues in public policy. We’re also trying to make the University of Manchester a ‘go to’ place for commentary and explanation on major political events,” said Westwood.

“To help both of these objectives we’re offering support for staff and students to write about and influence policymaking.”

The event will also provide a platform for bloggers, novice or experienced, to get published on the Manchester Policy Blogs website. In fact, a response to the day is encouraged, with organisers hoping the event will serve as one big creative space for students and staff to discuss the policies and ideas that matter to you.

Prof Westwood told The Mancunion: “The Budget is an ideal time to get people together from across the university community to share reactions and ideas and to turn these into blogs for Policy@Manchester and content for The Mancunion.”

The Policy@Manchester team will be helping contributors throughout the day with advice for both written and video blogs. Further details can be provided by speakers and experts in attendance.

If all this wasn’t enough incentive, Prof Westwood assures us that “there will be a free lunch and lots of cake too!”

There will also be an appearance from a Mancunion “provocateur” at the Hack event.

Tickets are free to register for and available here.