Head of Housing. 2018-2020
Jack lead Policy Exchange’s work on housing. His research has included work on building more beautiful homes and places, improving the planning system; and, new town development on the edge of London. In particular his work on raising housebuilding standards has attracted cross-party support and led to the Government creating the Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission. An article in The Economist welcomed Policy Exchange’s work on this subject as pioneering “the biggest idea in housing policy since the sale of council houses under Margaret Thatcher.” Before joining Policy Exchange, Jack was Head of Research at the think tank Localis where he wrote extensively on the role of place in politics and policy, while managing and supporting the development of their research output.
“Policy Exchange is doing wonderful work on trying to rethink capitalism in the light of growing concentrations of wealth, and social policy in the light of growing public alienation.”
Policy Exchange’s latest report on tackling the housing crisis, Building More, Building Beautiful, has been referenced in the Government’s recently published Social Housing Green Paper. As called for in our report, the Green Paper highlights the importance of good design to social housing. It references our research which shows how better quality buildings and public spaces improve people’s quality of life and happiness.
The planning system has little relevance to the country’s 21st century liberalised economy and society facing continuous change. It increases the costs of housing, living and doing business. Although the planning system has regularly been tinkered with in the past few decades, its fundamental principles are the same as when it was established in 1947 as part of a government program to establish a command-and-control economy. To remain a competitive economy and to address the country’s housing shortage, the planning system is in urgent need of wholesale reform. This report puts forwards a blueprint for doing that.
Many of the most valued and important frontline public sector workers like police officers, teachers, NHS staff and firefighters are struggling to live in or near the community they serve. They often face acute housing affordability challenges which force them to commute from ever further away, particularly in the rental sector and particularly in London and the South East. In this report we argue the Key Worker Housing initiative should be revitalised as part of reforms to Affordable Housing policy. The Government should announce a new policy programme to increase the stock of homes available to Key Workers struggling with housing costs and update the Key Worker eligibility criteria.
In his first speech as Prime Minister on domestic policy, Boris Johnson said that his Government will, “emphasise the need, the duty, to build beautiful homes that people actually want to live in, and being sensitive to local concerns.” As the Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission enters its second phase – a final report is due by the end of the year – we are publishing this essay collection to provide new and practical ideas for building more beautiful homes and places. The collection brings together thinkers from law, finance, energy and environment, architecture, property, planning and housing.
How policy can incentivise beautiful housing schemes and unlock the building of new homes at the scale required by the housing shortage.
A series of policy ideas for new leadership. Part 1: Housing, Energy and Environment
To address the shortage of homes in and around London, a new government Department for Growth should work with the Mayor of London and partner directly with developers to build 15 new millennial towns in the capital’s commuter belt.
A collection of essays on the design, style and economics of the built environment.
A significant increase in the number of homes purpose-built for older people is needed to support the country’s ageing population to live healthily and happily for longer.
The housing crisis will only be solved if the developers of new homes place more emphasis on design and style to gain the support of existing communities, according to exclusive new polling for Policy Exchange.
Photo Credit: Images Money The Conservative and Labour manifestos make significant pledges on housing policy. The focus of the Conservatives is supporting people into home-ownership, while the centrepiece of Labour’s manifesto is the pledge that local authorities build many more homes per year. Whichever party leads the country after December’s election will face immediate pressures to start delivering on these pledges. How can they do this and what issues will they […]
The Conservative and Labour manifestos make significant pledges on housing policy. The focus of the Conservatives is supporting people into home-ownership, while the centrepiece of Labour’s manifesto is the pledge that local authorities build many more homes per year. Whichever party leads the country after December’s election will face immediate pressures to start delivering on these pledges. How can they do this and what issues will they face? In the […]
Changes to the planning system can make it easier for high streets to adapt to prevailing trends in how we live, work and shop.
We’re delighted to announce that this November will be “Building Beautiful Month” at Policy Exchange, the next stage of our efforts to address the housing crisis, the major domestic policy issue of the day.
Policy Exchange’s Jack Airey looks at Government’s council housing policy and sets out the challenges ahead for building a new generation of council homes.
Policy Exchange’s Place Research Fellow, Jack Airey, argues that city-regions and counties in England and Wales should be able to set their own bank holiday.