On March 28th, at the Royal Economic Society Annual Conference, NuCamp hosted a special session focused on the important issue of central bank transparency and communication. Chaired by Andrew Gurney (Senior Economic Advisor, HM Treasury), the session contained three presentations.
Petra Geraats (Cambridge University) opened the session with a discussion of her work “Transparency of monetary policy in a post-crisis world”, which empirically explores the evolution of monetary policy transparency over the past 30 years and especially the tendency for ever greater transparency.
Gareth Ramsey, the Bank of England’s Executive Director for Communication, then discussed his experience of transparency and communication within the central bank, highlighting the difficulty of engaging people outside of the Bank’s traditional audience of financial market participants and the financial press.
NuCamp’s own Michael McMahon presented his findings on Central Bank Communication and the General Public, which shows that carefully reformulated communication can improve the understanding and interpretation of the key messages from the Bank of England’s Inflation Report. The main challenge remains to get the general public to engage in reading the material.
The audience, a mix of academic researchers, policy makers and journalists, asked questions concerning all the topics as well as broadening the discussion to consider issues of communication in financial stability.