Issue date: 19 June 2003

ISSUE DATE: 19/06/03

Thursday 26 June 2003 at 6.00pm

Professor Ron P Smith of Birbeck College, University of London will deliver the first Annual Lecture on Economics and Security on: 'Valuing Defence: VFM*, RMA* and RAB*'.

The lecture is the first of what will become an annual event hosted by the Defence Economics Research Unit (DERU) in the School of Economics at UWE and the ESRC funded Arms Trade and Industry Project.

Dr Derek Braddon, who leads the Defence Economics Research Unit, says they see the new Annual Lecture in Economics and Security playing an important part in increasing understanding of this subject. "The defence industry plays a significant role in the economy - particularly here in the South West region - and we hope these lectures will enhance people's understanding of the relationship between Economics and Security. Our Research Unit has a strong track record in this subject and this Annual Lecture will enable us to bring excellent speakers to Bristol which will further enhance our expertise in this area."

Professor Paul Dunne, Head of the School of Economics commented: "This first lecture by Professor Ron Smith will look at what is the value of defence for a country and how we might calculate it. Economists, like cynics, are accused of knowing the price of everything and the value of nothing. This lecture looks at some aspects of the theory of value for defence."

The lecture will ask: What do we mean by Value for Money (VFM)* in the area of defence and how do we know if we have the right force structure to ensure our military security?

In particular, it will consider how the Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA)* and network centric warfare changes these calculations and the tension between economic efficiency and military efficiency in judging value for money. Finally, it will examine the extent to which the Resource Accounting and Budgeting (RAB)* system produces the right numbers to make decisions about military value.

Ron Smith has been Professor of Applied Economics, Birkbeck College, University of London since 1985 and visiting professor at London Business School and the University of Colorado. He is a leading international researcher in defence and peace economics and has published widely in the field of applied econometrics and defence economics. He is an Associate Fellow of the Royal United Services Institute for Defence Studies and has served on the Treasury Academic Panel and the Board of the Centre for Defence Studies, Kings College, London. He has worked as a consultant for a variety of organisations, including the UK National Audit Office on defence topics.

The lecture will take place in room 2BO20, UWE, Frenchay Campus, Coldharbour Lane, Bristol, at 6.00pm on Thursday, 26 June.

Further details from Derek.braddon@uwe.ac.uk Tel 0117 344 3923.

The lecture is the first event of an international conference on Economics and Security organised by ECAAR (UK) and the School of Economics at UWE. Details are available at http://carecon.org.uk/Conferences/Conf2003/CONF2003.html


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