Past Events

Panel Discussion on Private Currencies 4th August 2020

Wednesday 17 January 2018

A panel discussion to launch a collaboration between the Mouradian Foundation and LSE was held in the Shaw Library at the LSE before an audience of invited guests on the afternoon of Wednesday 17 January 2018.

The discussion, which was held under Chatham House rules, explored the issues surrounding private currencies (with particular reference to bitcoin). The panel comprised Andy Haldane, the Chief Economist at the Bank of England, Minouche Shafik, the Director of the LSE, and Tim Besley, Professor of Economics and Political Science and W Arthur Lewis Professor of Development Economics.

The panel was chaired by David Smith of the Sunday Times.

Andy Haldane

Chief Economist at the Bank of England

Andrew G Haldane is the Chief Economist at the Bank of England. He is a member of the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee and Chair of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Council. Among other positions, he is Honorary Professor at University of Nottingham, a Visiting Fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford, a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and a Governor of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research. He has authored around 200 articles and 4 books.  Andrew is the founder and trustee of ‘Pro Bono Economics’, a charity which brokers economists into charitable projects, a trustee of National Numeracy and Patron of the charities Reach and Speakers for Schools.

Minouche Shafik

Dame Minouche Shafik has spent most of her career straddling the worlds of public policy and academia. Minouche’s early research focused on the determinants of investment, the environment and economic growth, the economies of the Middle East and North Africa, trade and migration.She taught at both Georgetown University and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. During her 15 years at the World Bank, Minouche worked on its first ever World Development Report on the environment, designed reform programmes for transition countries in Eastern Europe, and developed proposals for economic integration in support of the Oslo peace process in the Middle East. She became the youngest vice-president in the history of the World Bank at the age of 36.

Tim Besley

President of the International Economic Association

Tim Besley served on the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee from September 2006 to August 2009 and is School Professor of Economics and Political Science and W. Arthur Lewis Professor of Development Economics at the London School of Economics.

He is a member of the Institutions, Organizations and Growth Program of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research and his research interests are focused on aspects of economic policy formation.

David Smith


David Smith has been Economics Editor of The Sunday Times since 1989, where he writes a weekly column. He is also an assistant editor, policy adviser and chief leader-writer. He has won a number of awards, including the Harold Wincott award for Senior Financial Journalist of the Year (2004). David is a regular contributor to the CBI's Business Voice and also writes a home economics column in the property section of The Sunday Times.