Two of Policy Exchange’s experts are among the most read authors in Parliament, a new Freedom of Information request has revealed. Road to Somewhere, by Policy Exchange’s Head of Demography, Immigration and Integration David Goodhart (longlisted for this year’s Orwell Prize) was the second most borrowed book in the House of Commons, behind only ‘How Parliament Works’. The Head of our Britain in the World Project Professor John Bew’s Orwell Prize-winning Citizen Clemwas also one of the most borrowed books in the House of Commons in 2017. Both books were named last year by the Observer among their 100 best political books.
There is a growing sense in the West that, after a string of victories, Putin overstepped the mark in the Skripal affair — according to the Head of Policy Exchange’s Britain in the World project Professor John Bew and Policy Exchange alumnus Shiraz Maher in a lead essay for the New Statesman. Having been met with an unexpectedly robust response from Britain, the US and a number of allied states, there is reason to think that he has been put on the back foot. The Trump administration – encouraged by France and the UK – may now see a moment to drive this advantage home. Momentarily, at least, the proliferation and increased use of chemical weapons, from Salisbury to Syria, has provided the Western alliance with a much-needed sense of common purpose.
As part of its commentary on the Syrian crisis, Policy Exchange’s Senior Research Fellow, Defence and Border Security Gabriel Elefteriu, wrote for the The Sun outlining the risks of a Western conflict with Russia if action is taken against Assad. Gabriel was also quoted in another Sun piece arguing that the media was the first line of defence in combating the continuing assault of fake news from Russia.
As the Government deals with the Russian threat, former Prime Minister David Cameron reminds us of another: Islamism
Speaking at a Policy Exchange conference in Washington DC, former Prime Minister David Cameron warned of the continuing threat to the West posed by Islamism. Paul Goodman observed on ConservativeHome that no other UK think tank has ‘the reach to bring together 50 or so experts, wonks, and diplomats in America’s capital for an event like this’,
High-quality textbooks and teaching methods are needed to ensure children from all backgrounds receive the rigorous education they deserve. According this new Policy Exchange report, inadequate materials for teaching the National Curriculum are holding back pupils in England and increasing teacher workload. Working in collaboration with respected institutions like the British Museum, the Government should support the creation and take-up of world-leading curriculum materials. The report’s author John Blake – Policy Exchange’s Head of Education & Social Reform and a former teacher – discussed its recommendations on Radio 4’s Today programme and wrote on the same topic for the TES.
The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Rt Hon Boris Johnson MP, set out his vision for a liberal Brexit in a speech given at Policy Exchange. Mr Johnson urged Remainers and Leavers to unite behind the opportunities that leaving the EU affords. He said that there is a case for future regulatory divergence from the EU: “We would be mad to go through this process of extrication from the EU, and not to take advantage of the economic freedoms it will bring.” In many areas, however, such as security co-operation and cultural exchange, there would continue to be high levels of engagement.
With 9 million people reporting that they are always or often lonely, as a society have we structured loneliness into our lives? Loneliness can be triggered by moments of transition that can happen to us all: the birth of a child, retirement, relationship breakdown, being a newcomer to this country, returning from serving in our armed forces, starting university, moving home, bereavement. The places where we came together – like churches, pubs and the workplace – have changed out of all recognition. Many of our connections have been turned into transactions. Rachel Reeves MP, Co-Chair of the Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness, set out what the Commission has learned and gave her thoughts on how we can create a less lonely world. Neil O’Brien OBE MP responded, with the discussion chaired by Daily Mirror Columnist Ros Wynne-Jones.
Can the UK lead the world in the development and production of batteries for electric cars? This is the stated aim of the government’s support programme for the battery sector. Yet, in the light of the current state of the UK battery sector and the strength of international competition, world leadership in car batteries is almost certainly unattainable. If the demand for electric cars grows as fast as many forecasters expect, investment in battery production should be financed by the private sector, argues Sir Geoffrey Owen, Policy Exchange’s Head of Industrial Policy and a former editor of the Financial Times, in a new paper Batteries for Electric Cars: A case study in industrial strategy.
As Putin celebrates another election victory, today’s Labour party should remember that there can be no coherent response to the Russian provocation without an appreciation of how our collective security is underscored by NATO and the role Labour played in its creation. In a new essay, In Defence of Collective Security, Professor John Bew, Head of Policy Exchange’s Britain in the World project and an award winning biographer of Clement Attlee, argues that our current system of Western security, based on NATO, was painstakingly put in place by Attlee and Ernest Bevin and that the current Labour leadership betrays that legacy.
In the UNISON case, the Supreme Court quashed the Government’s use of its statutory power to impose fees for employment tribunal proceedings. It ruled that the fees were unlawful because the level at which they had been set had the effect in practice of limiting access to justice. The judgment has been widely hailed as a victory for access to justice and another case in which courts have defended the rule of law from the executive. In this new paper for Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project, former First Parliamentary Counsel Sir Stephen Laws argues that the Supreme Court went badly wrong in the UNISON case, taking over a policy question that was not for it to decide.
Ignore the naysayers – the Commonwealth can be a big part of the UK’s future. This is the message from Policy Exchange’s Ralph Buckle, also Director and Co-Founder of Commonwealth Exchange (CX), who argues that numerous straw men have been raised during CHOGM. On trade and co-operation, the UK has many friends outside the EU who will be eager to reinvigorate old ties.
Does the presence of an Indian Prime Minister after several years of absence, Brexit and a return to great power politics offer a new role for the Commonwealth?
Central banks should use the relatively benign economic conditions to reorientate money policy argues Warwick Lightfoot – himself former special adviser to three chancellors. As the world economy has recovered, central banks need to re-examine their lax approach to tools such as interest rates so that they can respond to any future crisis. Not doing so will leave their arsenals worryingly empty.
Farmers should be rewarded for land stewardship and public goods, and removing tariffs will increase consumer choice and keep prices down, helping the poorest most. That was the message Policy Exchange’s Economics Research Fellow Michael Taylor gave to the EFRA Select Committee when discussing Farming Tomorrow, our seminal report on opportunities for replacing the Common Agricultural Policy after Brexit.
Two of Policy Exchange’s experts are among the most read authors in Parliament, a new Freedom of Information request has revealed. Road to Somewhere, by Policy Exchange’s Head of Demography, Immigration and Integration David Goodhart (longlisted for this year’s Orwell Prize) was the second most borrowed book in the House of Commons, behind only ‘How Parliament Works’. The Head of our Britain in the World Project Professor John Bew’s Orwell Prize-winning Citizen Clem was also one of the most borrowed books in the House of Commons in 2017. Both books were named last year by the Observer among their 100 best political books.
Policy Exchange was delighted to host Defence Secretary Rt Hon Gavin Williamson CBE for his first keynote speech, held at Rolls Royce’s site near Bristol. The Defence Secretary condemned Russia’s “atrocious” actions in Salisbury and committed to a modernising defence programme because “soft power only works because hard power stands behind it”.
- Thursday, 19 April, 2018
18:00 - 19:30
What can the UK learn, if anything, from the Swiss relationship with the EU? Policy Exchange Head of Demography, Immigration and Integration David Goodhart chaired an event at which this was discussed by Sir Ivan Rogers, Former Permanent Representative of the UK to the EU; Professor Michael Ambuhl, Former Swiss State Secretary and lead negotiator for Switzerland’s agreement with the EU; and Allie Renison, Head of Europe and Trade Policy, Institute of Directors.
- Friday, 6 April, 2018
8:45 - 10:00
Policy Exchange welcomed Siv Jensen, Norwegian Finance Minister and leader of the Progress Party, who said that British and Norwegian views on the single market in financial services have often been aligned and reflected on the challenges for monetary policy, including the lowering of inflation targets and an increase in interest rates to ensure credit risk is appropriately priced. Singling out the housing market, she argued that home ownership is cherished by people in both Norway and Britain – and that a balanced approach to regulation is required to avoid asset booms (and busts).
Venue: Policy Exchange
- Wednesday, 28 March, 2018
18:00 - 19:30
Policy Exchange was delighted to host the keynote valedictory speech of Hon Alexander Downer as High Commissioner of Australia. Mr Downer praised British leadership in responding to Russia, saying “Not only did the British Government react robustly to the chemical weapons attack in Salisbury but it has brought to bear the power of Britain to corral the great network of Western allies at long last to stand up to Russian intransigence”. He also reflected on the opportunities for free trade after Brexit. Mr Downer is Policy Exchange’s incoming Chairman.