Themes

Image Competition and regulation

Competition and regulation

One of the main research questions addressed by CPB concerns the role of government in achieving a better functioning market. Government plays a role in, for example, the energy market and the telecommunications market. In order for markets to function properly for consumers, government needs to be aware of which markets it should regulate and how to go about doing so.

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Image Cost-benefit analyses

Cost-benefit analyses

CPB uses cost-benefit analyses (CBAs) to assess whether a certain policy measure increases or would be likely to increase societal welfare. In this way, CBAs are an information tool that, from the perspective of society as a whole, calculates and systematically outlines the advantages and disadvantages of a policy measure.

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Image Demography and inequality

Demography and inequality

Demographic changes have an impact on the economy and may cause socio-economic inequality. The ageing of the Dutch population puts pressure on both our pension system and health care system. Labour market entrants start from a position of disadvantage that may have a long-term impact. To continue to accommodate such developments, public provisions for crucial parts of the economy—such as education and the labour market—need to be reassessed on a regular basis.

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Image Digital economy

Digital economy

The continual development in ICT affects all areas of the economy. New incorporations of ITC in numerous products and services cause never-ending changes to the economic landscape and also may have a fundamental impact on the markets. This also leads to changes in the position and role of government.

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Image Education and Science

Education and Science

Knowledge is one of the driving forces of economic growth and prosperity. Not only for the areas of society that move increasingly towards a knowledge economy, but also for individual citizens for whom knowledge gathering and capability development furthers their personal growth and career opportunities.

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Image Elections

Elections

CPB analyses election manifestos (in the period leading up to general elections) and coalition agreements and alternative budget proposals during the time in which a coalition is being formed. In this way, CPB helps political parties to outline the effects of their proposals and plans. Usually, the prognosis about purchasing power—the expected impact of those proposals on the purchasing power of citizens— receives a particularly large amount of attention.

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Image Financial markets

Financial markets

The financial markets oil the wheels of the economy. CPB’s Financial markets programme is focused on the organisational issues in this sector and the impact the sector has on the real economy. The programme anticipates on current policy themes, such as competition between financial players, financial vulnerabilities of homeowners, and a more sustainable housing stock. In the coming years, we will pay particular attention to the housing market cycles and government policy on the market of corporate finance.

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Image Globalisation and regional differences

Globalisation and regional differences

Globalisation has caused a permanent change in the economic order. Scale increases, international production chains, strongly mobile production factors and supranational legislation have become the characteristics of modern economies. The influence of these global developments on urban and regional levels, however, varies, and thus has certain consequences for regional policy and flexibility in the tax base.

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Image Government

Government

The way government behaves affects all people within Dutch society. Government spending covers about half of the gross domestic product (GDP), which the government finances largely from tax revenues and premiums.

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Image Health care

Health care

Health care reform is the result of, among other things, increasing costs and population ageing. This calls for effective solutions to ensure that the Netherlands will be able to offer high quality and accessible health care at a reasonable cost, within the framework of the Dutch Health Insurance Act (Zvw). CPB’s research in this area focuses on elements such as competition between care providers, the role of health care insurance companies, long-term sustainability of the health care system, and the organisation of long-term care.

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Image International economy

International economy

The international environment is very important to open economies such as that of the Netherlands. The economic growth in Europe and the rest of the world has a great impact on Dutch economic development.

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Image Labour market

Labour market

CPB analyses employment and unemployment, and uses this information in its projections as well as for gaining a better understanding of the impact of policy on the Dutch labour market. Focal areas include the more flexible labour market, employment, the withdrawal of the elderly and the lower end of the labour market, as well as regional labour market differences. The labour market is related to many other research areas, such as its relationships with the housing market, social security and taxation.

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Image Local government

Local government

Local government authorities play an important role in the supply of public facilities and provisions. CPB’s programme on local government authorities studies their budgets and financing and the role of these authorities in the supply of such facilities and provisions, with particular attention being paid to decentralisations in the social domain.

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Image Migration and integration

Migration and integration

International migration flows are putting pressure on national-economic absorption capacity. Labour migration has a varying effect on workers in a wide variety of sectors and regions. Asylum migration calls for an intensive process of integration into society and the labour market.

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Image Pensions and population ageing

Pensions and population ageing

The life expectancy of the Dutch population continues to increase. Although this is a sign of increasing prosperity, it also presents a number of challenges for society. Public facilities and provisions cannot be sustained in the future without certain adjustments being made.

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Image Physical environment

Physical environment

Economic development has a certain impact on our physical environment. Urbanisation, mobility and transport, as well as regional distribution of housing and employment—just to name a few—carry certain consequences for nature and the environment and the liveability of both city districts and rural areas.

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Image Productivity

Productivity

Productivity is broadly defined, namely as a measure for the efficient use of available production factors. The primary focus is on the national level, whereby it is possible to zoom in on specific industries. Attention is paid to structural trends as well as to cyclical variation in productivity growth. CPB research focuses on the determinants of productivity development.

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Image Scenarios and forecasts

Scenarios and forecasts

One of CPB’s main tasks is that of making projections about short-term, medium-term and long-term economic developments in the Netherlands. The short-term projections concern the current and the subsequent year. The medium term covers a period of 4 to 5 years (roughly one cabinet term), and the long term can cover 20 to 40 years or even longer.

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Image Sustainability and circular economy

Sustainability and circular economy

Modern economies are faced with the challenge of having to connect opportunities for new economic growth with the preconditions for sustainable economic development. Economic growth needs to result from increased productivity without the ever-increasing use of scarce resources and the related negative impact on climate. This calls for an energy transition and economic order in which production involves a more intensive reuse of resources.

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Image Welfare state

Welfare state

The Netherlands is a welfare state, with its unemployment benefits, disability insurance, social welfare benefits and state pensions (AOW). This welfare state is a major government responsibility, particularly from a financial perspective. Important, in this respect, is not only the degree of social security but also the distribution of income across the population. CPB research focuses on the welfare state’s economic aspects, such as taxations, the labour market and purchasing power.

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