The PwC Paying for Tomorrow Prize for Students

A country’s taxes can change its fortunes, and those of its people.

We’re delighted to announce the joint winners of The PwC Paying for Tomorrow Prize for Students.
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The PwC Paying for Tomorrow Prize for Students

How a country raises taxes can change its fortunes, and those of its people.

This major competition is part of PwC's campaign on building a UK tax system fit for the future. We want to hear from people from all walks of life on how the tax system should change. As the future workforce, we're really keen to get your views, and to make it relevant, we thought we'd focus on how tax can impact jobs.

For the chance of winning £20,000, we're inviting students* to write an answer to the following question:

How would you change the UK tax system to improve future employment prospects and drive the UK economy?

Some of you may know a bit about tax; others very little. No matter. There's lot of information on our Paying for Tomorrow webpages that may help, and another good starting point is the Treasury website.

Kevin Nicholson
Kevin Nicholson
PwC UK Head of Tax
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“ Tax impacts everyone, every day and in many ways but most people don’t get a chance to have a say on how taxes are raised. This campaign is about opening up the debate. We want to hear from students - tomorrow’s workforce who will be impacted hugely by tax policies put in place now. The substantial prize reflects the importance we place on students’ fresh thinking.
 
It’s time for a strategic vision of how tax will be generated in years to come. As a large tax business, we recognise we have a responsibility to champion change. ”

Kevin Nicholson, Head of Tax

Criteria
Entries were between 2,000 and 3,000 words, and included a 300 word summary.

The judges were not looking for detailed financial or technical analysis (although appendices, outlining research, could be included). Consideration was given according to:

  • the overall vision and its merit
  • articulation and strength of argument
  • the viability of the proposals - including recognition that any changes must maintain tax revenues
  • consideration of how the economy and the way people transact has changed, and will continue to change

Appendices were included in the word count.

Judging Panel
An esteemed panel of experts judged the competition. All the judges had a strong interest and understanding of the issues at stake and bring different perspectives

Prize Giving
The winner will be announced in February at a prize giving ceremony in London. The top three entrants will be invited to share their ideas, speaking for 5 minutes each. The two runners up will each receive £1,000.

The PwC Paying for Tomorrow Prize for Students

We’re delighted to announce as joint winners of The PwC Paying for Tomorrow Prize for Students.

Winner   Richard Cha
Winner   Jamie Parker

Runner Up   Moira Chadwick
Runner Up   Ryan Gwinnett

The judging panel could not separate the winning essays, awarding each entrant a £10k share of the prize money.

Here are the winning entries:

Read Richard Cha’s essay summary
Download Richard’s essay

Read Jamie Parker’s essay summary
Download Jamie’s essay

Across all the entries, the judges disregarded what it felt were relatively
minor inaccuracies

 
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Vanessa Houlder
  • Vanessa Houlder

Vanessa Houlder has been part of the FT’s economics team, specialising in tax issues, since 2004. She has worked as a journalist on the Financial Times since 1988 covering, in turn, British companies, the commercial property industry, technology, management and the environment. Before joining the FT, she worked for the Investors Chronicle for two years. She has a degree in Natural Sciences and a post-graduate certificate in journalism.

Vanessa Houlder
Tax correspondent, The Financial Times
Judging Panel
An esteemed panel of experts judged the competition, chosen for their knowledge and individual perspectives.
All the judges have shown an interest in tax reform and brought different experiences to the competition.
The five judges
 
Timothy Besley
  • Timothy Besley

Timothy Besley is School Professor of Economics and Political Science at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), Gluskin-Granovsky Fellow at the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) and Visiting Professor at the IIES, Stockholm. He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society, the British Academy, and the European Economics Association. He is also a foreign honorary member of the American Economic Association and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is currently President of the IEA and in 2010 he was President of the European Economic Association. Professor Besley is a past co-editor of the American Economic Review, a former member of the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee and a 2005 winner of the Yrjö Jahnsson Award of the European Economic Association. He has mainly written in the fields of Development Economics, Public Economics and Political Economy. He maintains an active engagement in economic policy issues and was recently co-Chair of the LSE Growth Commission.

Timothy Besley
school professor of economics and political science at the London School of Economics and Political Science
Andrew Sentance
  • Andrew Sentance

Andrew Sentance is Senior Economic Adviser to PwC. He joined the firm in November 2011 after serving as an external member of the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England.

After studying at Cambridge and the LSE, Andrew started his career as a business economist at the Confederation of British Industry in the mid-1980s before moving to the London Business School in 1994. While at the CBI, he was a founder member of the Treasury’s Panel of Independent Forecasters - also known as the ‘seven wise men’. Immediately before joining the Bank of England, Andrew was Chief Economist at British Airways, where he also worked on business strategy and planning, airport policy, airport regulation and environmental affairs.

Andrew is a part-time Professor at Warwick Business School, a visiting professor at Royal Holloway, London, and is a Fellow and former Chairman of the Society of Business Economists.

Andrew Sentance
PwC Senior Economic Adviser
Linda Bennett
  • Linda Bennett

Designer and entrepreneur Linda Bennett, is one of the UK’s most celebrated business women.

The founder of LK Bennett learned her trade from the floor up, including stints on the shop floors of Whistles and Joseph. When she was 26, Linda identified a huge gap between the designer shoe market and what was available on the high street. The idea for LK Bennett was born and she struck out on her own with £13,000 of her savings and a bank loan of £15,000, which she repaid within three months of opening her first shop. A clothing and accessories range followed, again crossing the gap between mainstream high street and designer wear.

In 2006, Bennett was awarded an OBE for services to the fashion industry. After running the company for 18 years, Linda sold the majority stake in her fashion chain in 2008.

Linda Bennett
Designer and entrepreneur
Sir Michael Rake
  • Sir Michael Rake

Sir Michael Rake, knighted in 2007 is chairman of BT Group plc, as well as deputy chairman of Barclays PLC, and President of the CBI. He is also a director of McGraw Hill Financial, and chairman of Majid AL Futtaim Holdings LLC.

Mike’s business advisory roles include his membership of the Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Group, the Advisory Council for Business for New Europe, and Board of the TransAtlantic Business Council. He is also a Senior Adviser for Chatham House.

Mike was chairman of the private equity oversight group the Guidelines Monitoring Committee from 2008 to 2013; chairman of easyJet plc from 2010-2013; and the first chairman of the UK Commission for Employment and Skills from 2007 to 2010. He was chairman of KPMG international from 2002 to 2007; He was a director of the Financial Reporting Council from 2008 to 2011 and chairman of Business in the Community from 2004-2007.

Sir Michael Rake
Vanessa Houlder
  • Vanessa Houlder

Vanessa Houlder has been part of the FT’s economics team, specialising in tax issues, since 2004. She has worked as a journalist on the Financial Times since 1988 covering, in turn, British companies, the commercial property industry, technology, management and the environment. Before joining the FT, she worked for the Investors Chronicle for two years. She has a degree in Natural Sciences and a post-graduate certificate in journalism.

Vanessa Houlder
Tax correspondent, The Financial Times
Judging Panel
An esteemed panel of experts will judge the competition, chosen for their knowledge and individual perspectives.
All the judges have shown an interest in tax reform and bring different experiences to the competition.
The five judges
 
Timothy Besley
  • Timothy Besley

Timothy Besley is School Professor of Economics and Political Science at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), Gluskin-Granovsky Fellow at the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) and Visiting Professor at the IIES, Stockholm. He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society, the British Academy, and the European Economics Association. He is also a foreign honorary member of the American Economic Association and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is currently President of the IEA and in 2010 he was President of the European Economic Association. Professor Besley is a past co-editor of the American Economic Review, a former member of the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee and a 2005 winner of the Yrjö Jahnsson Award of the European Economic Association. He has mainly written in the fields of Development Economics, Public Economics and Political Economy. He maintains an active engagement in economic policy issues and was recently co-Chair of the LSE Growth Commission.

Timothy Besley
school professor of economics and political science at the London School of Economics and Political Science
Andrew Sentance
  • Andrew Sentance

Andrew Sentance is Senior Economic Adviser to PwC. He joined the firm in November 2011 after serving as an external member of the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England.

After studying at Cambridge and the LSE, Andrew started his career as a business economist at the Confederation of British Industry in the mid-1980s before moving to the London Business School in 1994. While at the CBI, he was a founder member of the Treasury’s Panel of Independent Forecasters - also known as the ‘seven wise men’. Immediately before joining the Bank of England, Andrew was Chief Economist at British Airways, where he also worked on business strategy and planning, airport policy, airport regulation and environmental affairs.

Andrew is a part-time Professor at Warwick Business School, a visiting professor at Royal Holloway, London, and is a Fellow and former Chairman of the Society of Business Economists.

Andrew Sentance
PwC Senior Economic Adviser
Linda Bennett
  • Linda Bennett

Designer and entrepreneur Linda Bennett, is one of the UK’s most celebrated business women.

The founder of LK Bennett learned her trade from the floor up, including stints on the shop floors of Whistles and Joseph. When she was 26, Linda identified a huge gap between the designer shoe market and what was available on the high street. The idea for LK Bennett was born and she struck out on her own with £13,000 of her savings and a bank loan of £15,000, which she repaid within three months of opening her first shop. A clothing and accessories range followed, again crossing the gap between mainstream high street and designer wear.

In 2006, Bennett was awarded an OBE for services to the fashion industry. After running the company for 18 years, Linda sold the majority stake in her fashion chain in 2008.

Linda Bennett
Designer and entrepreneur
Sir Michael Rake
  • Sir Michael Rake

Sir Michael Rake, knighted in 2007 is chairman of BT Group plc, as well as deputy chairman of Barclays PLC, and President of the CBI. He is also a director of McGraw Hill Financial, and chairman of Majid AL Futtaim Holdings LLC.

Mike’s business advisory roles include his membership of the Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Group, the Advisory Council for Business for New Europe, and Board of the TransAtlantic Business Council. He is also a Senior Adviser for Chatham House.

Mike was chairman of the private equity oversight group the Guidelines Monitoring Committee from 2008 to 2013; chairman of easyJet plc from 2010-2013; and the first chairman of the UK Commission for Employment and Skills from 2007 to 2010. He was chairman of KPMG international from 2002 to 2007; He was a director of the Financial Reporting Council from 2008 to 2011 and chairman of Business in the Community from 2004-2007.

Sir Michael Rake
 
*The Paying for Tomorrow Tax competition was open to all full-time students in further and higher education, who are currently residents of and studying in the UK. PwC reserved the right to contact the Director of Studies at the entrant's university/school/college to confirm their eligibility to take part in this competition.
 
In submitting the entry, the entrant authorised the use of the information it contains for any purposes in relation to the Paying for Tomorrow campaign. Full terms and conditions. Full terms and conditions.
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