Shoreham-born economist says CBE is an ‘unbelievable honour’

Paul Johnson grew up in Shoreham
Paul Johnson grew up in Shoreham

An economist who grew up in Shoreham and has been made a CBE in the 2018 Queen’s Birthday Honours hopes his success will inspire young people in the town.

Paul Johnson, the director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, who attended Kings Manor School – now Shoreham Academy – in Shoreham, was granted the award for services to the Social Sciences and Economics.

He is not the first economist from Shoreham to be honoured with a CBE: his colleague at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, Sir Richard Blundell, grew up in Shoreham and attended Boundstone School in Lancing, before being made a CBE in 2006 and given a Knighthood in 2014.

Mr Johnson said: “It is unbelievable to me that I have been honoured like this.

“It has been such a huge honour to work at the IFS with my amazing colleagues, including fellow Shoreham boy Sir Richard Blundell.

“To be recognised like this really is the icing on the cake.

“It’s been a long journey since my days at Kings Manor, now Shoreham Academy.

“I hope there is a pupil there today who will follow Richard and me into working in economic policy and maybe even to the IFS.”

Mr Johnson has worked and published extensively on the economics of public policy, with a particular focus on income distribution, public finances, pensions, tax, social security, education and climate change.

The married father-of-four’s career has included spells at HM Treasury, the Department for Education and the Financial Services Authority.

Between 2004 and 2007, he was deputy head of the Government Economic Service.

The Oxford University graduate has been the director of the IFS since January 2011 and is also currently visiting professor in the Department of Economics at University College London.

His colleague Sir Richard was appointed Research Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies in 1986 and has been Director of the ESRC Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy since its inauguration in 1991.

Sir Richard has fond memories of attending Boundstone in Lancing, now the Sir Robert Woodard Academy, in the 1960s, and particularly of cycling over the old wooden bridge until he was old enough to buy a Lambretta scooter.

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