Research assistants & interns

Ben McWilliams

Research Assistant

Twitter: @McWilliamsBen

Ben is working at Bruegel as a Research Assistant Intern in the field of climate and energy policy. He studied his BSc Economics at the University of Warwick, with one year spent studying at the University of Monash, Melbourne. He then studied an MSc in Economic Policy at Utrecht University.

His MSc thesis investigated carbon taxation in British Columbia, Canada, and his research interests revolve largely around energy and environmental topics. Further research topics of particular interest include: economic history (20th century), labour markets, and industrial policy.

Ben is a dual English and Dutch citizen.

Contact information

[email protected]bruegel.org

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Policy Brief

Greening the recovery by greening the fiscal consolidation

In the wake of COVID-19, some economic recovery policies will help green the economy – for example, energy renovation of buildings. But there are limits to the share of stimulus that can be explicitly green. The European Union should therefore also green the fiscal consolidation by setting out the path to much higher carbon prices than today. This would guide investment and provide revenues to help the fiscal consolidation.

By: Ben McWilliams, Simone Tagliapietra and Georg Zachmann Topic: Energy & Climate, Finance & Financial Regulation Date: July 8, 2020
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Blog Post

Lessons learned from the electricity tracker

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, Bruegel’s new tool has gauged the impact of the crisis on economic activity by tracking changes in electricity consumption.

By: Ben McWilliams and Georg Zachmann Topic: Energy & Climate, European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: June 22, 2020
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Blog Post

Covid-19 crisis: electricity demand as a real-time indicator

Comparing average weekday hourly electricity demand for the last few weeks to the year before, we visualise the moment when the current crisis began to have an impact on national economies and how large that impact was.

By: Ben McWilliams and Georg Zachmann Topic: Energy & Climate Date: March 25, 2020
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Policy Contribution

A European carbon border tax: much pain, little gain

The European Commission should not make the implementation of a carbon border adjustment mechanism into a must-have element of its climate policy. There is little in the way of strong empirical evidence that would justify a carbon-adjustment measure. Moreover, significant logistical, legal and political challenges will arise during the design. The EU should instead focus upon the implementation of measures to trigger the development of a competitive low-carbon industry in Europe.

By: Ben McWilliams and Georg Zachmann Topic: Energy & Climate, European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: March 5, 2020