Young Economists - The Rt. Hon. David Davis MP

Held on Tuesday, November 24, 2015, at 7:15 for 7:45pm

With support from Ruffer


  • The Rt. Hon. David Davis MP


Last time, it was Dame ‘Minouche’ Shafik; before that Mike Lynch – and before that Lord Lawson.

Next up for our ‘Young Economists’ (well, fairly young – under 40) group is David Davis, the Conservative MP for Haltemprice and Howden in the East Riding of Yorkshire. I am sure you all know David – a robust Foreign Office Minister under John Major, Shadow Home Secretary from 2003 to 2008, Chairman of the Future of Banking Commission in 2010, and lead author of a 2011 book of essays on The Future of Conservatism. Raised by a single mother on a council estate in Tooting, he part-paid for his education as a member of the Territorial’s 21 SAS Regiment – an experience that clearly helped shape him. After getting a BSc from Warwick, he worked for 17 years at Tate & Lyle, before entering Parliament in 1987.

He is generally (and rightly) viewed as a Thatcherite – someone who made it on hard work and ability, and who didn’t get a leg up in life. But he is a lot more than that. In recent years, he has taken prominent positions on:

  • civil liberties (his view is that the security services are a threat to our democracy, and need to be reined in);
  • Europe (he is – how can I put this? – robust, rather in the Nigel Lawson mold); and
  • financial services (his Commission’s recommendations largely set the agenda for the government’s Independent Commission on Banking).

Although a generally loyal back-bencher, David has also criticised the PM on a number of issues, including climate change, tuition fees, penal reform, and even parts of the current Trades Union bill. He is also a strong supporter of increased spending on the armed forces. No surprise that (with very few caveats) I am a huge supporter – of him personally and of his policies. I am delighted that he has agreed to come and speak – and I can promise you a lively and provocative evening.