RES Annual Public Lecture 2021: Why digital is so disruptive?

The Royal Economic Society is pleased to announce that a recording of the 2021 APL is now available to view.

This year's lecture was chaired by Dame Carol Propper and delivered by Prof. Diane Coyle CBE, Bennett Professor of Public Policy at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. 

Established in 2001, our Annual Public Lecture provides an opportunity for school students to watch internationally-renowned economists present their research. Principally aimed at sixth form students, the APL has become an established part of the senior school calendar.   

With thanks to:



Teacher Resources

Engaging Students in Economics

Discover Economics is a campaign led by the Royal Economic Society which aims to broaden the appeal of economics to potential students, change their perceptions of economics and economists and attract more students from under-represented groups (women, state school/further education college students and ethnic minorities).

Discover Economics - games

Discover Economics - video content

The University of Reading illustrates the breadth of career paths open to Economists, with these case studies

University of York highlights the opportunities in Economics through their Economics Department Poster

Lecture related papers and articles

Paper: General Purpose Technologies by Boyan Jovanovic and Peter L. Rousseau

Policy Brief: Uber and Beyond: Policy Implications for the UK

Innovation, Information, and The Networked Economy

How Uber, Airbnb, and Etsy Attracted Their First 1,000 Customers

With thanks to Diane Coyle, the University of Reading, the University of York and Discover Economics for these teaching resources.

Diane Coyle - Biography

Diane Coyle CBE

Professor Diane Coyle is the inaugural Bennett Professor of Public Policy at the University of Cambridge. Diane co-directs the Bennett Institute where she heads research under the themes of progress and productivity, and has been a government adviser on economic policy, including throughout the covid-19 pandemic. Her latest book, ‘Markets, State and People – Economics for Public Policy’ examines how societies reach decisions about the use and allocation of economic resources.

Diane is also a Director of the Productivity Institute, a Fellow of the Office for National Statistics, an adviser to the Competition and Markets Authority, and Senior Independent Member of the ESRC Council. She has served in public service roles including as Vice Chair of the BBC Trust, member of the Competition Commission, of the Migration Advisory Committee and of the Natural Capital Committee. Diane was previously Professor of Economics at the University of Manchester.

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The public lecture in 2019 was delivered by Professor Tony Venables, BP Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford and Director of the Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, where he talked about the economics that underpins city performance and discussed the policy challenges that cities face.  

09 Dec 2019

Annual Public Lecture 2019 - Prof Tony Venables - The Urban Challenge

Annual Public Lecture

04 Dec 2018

Annual Public Lecture 2018- Prof Oriana Bandiera - What Economists Really Do

Annual Public Lecture

21 Nov 2017

Annual Public Lecture 2017: Prof Stephen Machin - why commit crime?

Annual Public Lecture


Young Economist of the Year 2021

Our annual essay competition for sixth-form students to write an essay on a contemporary economic issue.

Economics Network

We support the work of the Economics Network which provides resources for students and universities.

Discover Economics Grant

Members can apply up to £1,500 for funding outreach events to encourage more students to study economics at university.