Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Chart of the Day
19 October 2021

How government departments still bear the scars of austerity

Spending on unprotected areas is set to be 25 per cent lower by the middle of the decade than in 2010.

By Ben Walker

Over a decade after the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government imposed austerity, most government departments have yet to regain the spending power they enjoyed in 2010. A Resolution Foundation analysis of spending found that funding for public services outside of health, defence, education and international development is set to be a fifth lower by the middle of this decade than in 2009-10.

Real-terms departmental spending has fallen in areas including transport (51 per cent), work and pensions (42 per cent), justice (28 per cent) and education (3 per cent). But spending on defence, the Home Office and health and social care has increased, while spending on the Foreign Office has risen as a result of its merger with the Department for International Development.

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. A weekly round-up of The New Statesman's climate, environment and sustainability content. A handy, three-minute glance at the week ahead in companies, markets, regulation and investment, landing in your inbox every Monday morning. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A weekly dig into the New Statesman’s archive of over 100 years of stellar and influential journalism, sent each Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.