2023: A Turning Point

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Although 2022 may not have been an overwhelmingly positive year, it was definitely a significant one, being the first year where Covid wasn’t a part of our daily vocabulary. In this year’s special edition, our writers reflect on some of the main themes of 2022, and whether 2023 can serve as a turning point.

In African Energy: A Comprehensive Outlook, Matthew Candau takes a look at the effect of the Ukrainian invasion on energy in Africa, and how the continent is looking to renewables as a future solution. Following along the lines of climate conversation, Rudra Sen takes a look at the action being taken to mitigate climate change, and why this isn’t enough in Mitigating Climate Change: Same Conversation, Minimal Action. Not only was there significant attention brough to economic issues, but Iran also saw large calls for social change. In Do Iran’s Calls for a Change in Social Climate Highlight Suggest Knock-On Effects to their Economic One, Ashwaty Nambiar explores the link between Iran’s economic and social climate.

Arguably, one of the biggest events of the year was the FIFA World Cup held in Qatar. Although Argentina’s win was largely celebrated despite criticisms surrounding the tournaments host country, Lily Bolash highlights that there’s a lot more going in in Argentina in A Messi Economy: Argentina After its World Cup Win.

Moving closer to home in the UK, one of main themes that couldn’t go unmissed was the pervasive strikes that brought the country to a shutdown. In Strikes in Crisis: UK protests at a Time of Economic Change, Natalie Olofsson gives a summary of what strikes occurred in the past year, and how things may transition into the following year. Along with the strikes, the UK seemed to be in a state of constant crisis. Harry Gillespie ponders whether the country could be hit with a period of stagflation in Stagflation for the Nation? With these economic concerns in mind, the UK government is desperately trying to revive the economy, with a major policy announcement being a proposed ‘Big Bang 2.0’, but as Ming Lee analyses, this policy may not live up to its name in Big Bang 2.0? Not Really. Looking to the new year, the UK government will have more to deal with, as Mark Connolly analyses The Northern Ireland Question: Sunak’s First Political Headache of 2023.

Over in Europe, the year was no less eventful. In his article, Stanislas Zagun takes a look at Macron’s controversial pension policy in Something is Rotten in the State of France – Emmanuel Macron and Pension Reform. Following chaos that has persisted in Turkey following its unorthodox policies throughout its recovery from the pandemic, Brynna Boyer gives an analysis of  the country’s upcoming elections in 2023 – A Turning Point for Erdoğan and the Republic of Türkiye. As the Russian invasion of Ukraine has affected energy costs globally, but especially in Europe, Tom Fort takes a look at Azerbaijan’s new energy deal with Europe in Hope for the East? The Question of Azerbaijan’s Role in Keeping Europe’s Lights on.

Across the Atlantic, there were many political highlights for the US’s political and judicial systems. Jack Horrigan reflects on the changes the Supreme Court has faced in the past year and its members political ties in Conservative Crossroads: The Supreme Court’s Activist Experiment. 2022 was the year that Nancy Pelosi stepped down from her tenure as Speaker of the House. Ross Alexander Hutton pays an homage to her iconic tenure in Madam Speaker, We Shall Not See Your Like Again. With the struggle that was Kevin McCarthy’s election to take Nancy Pelosi’s place, Ben Kushner reflects on the fragile nature of the House of Representatives, and what changes should be made to the system in Better for Lawmakers, Better for Americans: Expanding the US House of Representatives.

With all that’s gone on in the world, it’s no wonder that businesses have struggled too. In Please Fasten Your Seatbelt, Laura Gillies takes a look at the turbulence that the American aviation industry has been going through. With the tech stocks soaring during the pandemic, they took a tumble in 2022 alongside most industries as high interest rates and economic downturn hit markets. Finn Watson analyses at what’s in store for Big Tech in Turbulent Tech: Market Disruptions and the Future of the Tech Sector. Finally, the music and concert industry was one which was able to finally recover after years of postponed and cancelled in person events. However, as Pearce Hopkins analyses in Ticketmaster and The Monopolisation of The Live Events Industry, the industry seems to have more obstacles to face.

As we wrap up this foreword, many of last year’s messages still remain true, where we enter yet another year of uncertainty. We hope that our Special Edition brings to light and reminds you of some of the many events themes of the previous year, and gives some insight to what’s in store for 2023. As always, at the St Andrews Economist, we hope to continue to bring economics into perspective, with the following year likely to be as eventful as the previous, and perhaps show some hope of an upcoming turning point.

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