Policy Exchange’s proposal for a new law of Treason, which would help prosecute returning Isis fighters, was discussed in the House of Commons and House of Lords this week and received front page coverage in The Daily Telegraph. Rt Hon Dr Julian Lewis MP, Chair of the Defence Select Committee, quoted a newspaper article by Professor Richard Ekins, Head of Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project, which said that “Parliament should restore the law of treason, specifying that it is treacherous to support a group that one knows intends to attack the UK or is fighting UK forces.” Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP, the Home Secretary, responded: “I have read that article and heard what Professor Ekins has said in the past, and I think that it is worth considering it carefully.” In the House of Lords, responding to a question from Lord Faulks QC, former Justice Minister, about Policy Exchange’s proposal, Baroness Barran, replying for the Government, confirmed that the Home Secretary would look at the issue carefully. Read the news report here and the original Policy Exchange paper, Aiding the Enemy: How and why to restore the law of treason.
In a Q and A after her speech in Belfast on how Brexit will affect Northern Ireland, the Prime Minister was asked about Lord Bew’s recent Policy Exchange paper, The Backstop Paralysis: A Way Out. Specifically, did she agree with his assessment that the UK Government has not challenged the Irish Government’s narrative on the Good Friday Agreement being under threat. Read her response on the Guardian’s live blog.
“Beauty may have been neglected for years, but now decision-makers are moving in the right direction,” says Clare Foges in The Times. She praises Building Beautiful as “a superb collection of essays published… by the think tank Policy Exchange” and mentions contributions from the celebrated Syrian architect and author Marwa Al-Sabouni and Sir Terry Farrell, whose essay (and Times column) argued for a new generation of mansion blocks. Read the column here and the essay collection here.
Persistent disruption is endemic in English schools, according to a new study by Dr Joanna Williams, Policy Exchange’s Head of Education. In one of the most extensive investigations ever conducted into pupil behaviour, polling found that 75% of teachers think that low level disruption occurs frequently or very frequently in their schools and that 72% of them know a colleague who has “left the teaching profession because of bad behaviour”. The report, “It Just Grinds You Down”, was welcomed by Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP, the Education Secretary, and media coverage included in the Guardian, Telegraph and Sun.
“Policy Exchange is… multidisciplinary, highly influential, a productive force in the heart of Westminster and our political system,” said Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, at a Policy Exchange event with Alan Greenspan, former Chairman of the Federal Reserve, and Adrian Wooldridge, The Economist’s Bagehot columnist, to launch their new book, Capitalism in America.
Mr Carney added: “It’s at events like this where radical thoughts challenge orthodoxy and a culture of cross-disciplinary thinking fosters the creation of new ideas.”
Policy Exchange wins prize as best UK think on Energy and Environment issues
At the prestigious annual Prospect Think Tank of the Year Awards, Policy Exchange has won best UK think tank in the Energy and Environment category. The unit’s research has ranged from the role of future nuclear modular reactors to cleaning up vehicle emissions in Britain’s cities. The judges recognised that our work paid “particular attention to the economic drivers behind environmental policy”. The same week as winning this award, the Unit published a major new report setting how the UK can reduce carbon emissions and make UK heavy industry more competitive through an economy-wide carbon tax. The work and convening power of Policy Exchange’s Britain in the World unit was also recognised at the awards, with the visit by US Defense Secretary James Mattis thought particularly notable.
The Inner House of the Court of Session in Scotland acted wrongly in referring to the Court of Justice of the EU the question of whether the UK can unilaterally revoke Article 50 and so remain in the EU.
Policy Exchange’s Warwick Lightfoot – former Special Adviser to three Chancellors – looks at the possible impact of Brexit on financial stability and the willingness of the world to act in the event of another financial crisis.
What you didn’t know about the Irish Border – how technology can resolve the issue of the North/South frontier post-Brexit
David Trimble’s former Special Adviser – and Chief Economic Adviser to Policy Exchange – sets out how technology can ensure a low-profile border between North and South.
Following the latest attack in Westminster and another planned against Oxford Street, Professor Richard Ekins, Head of Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project, reiterates the need to update our law of treason.
Will Heaven, Managing Editor of The Spectator, will join Policy Exchange as Director of Policy later this summer. He will play a leading role in our domestic research programme, notably on two of our new work streams – Place and Prosperity.
Rt Hon Nick Gibb MP has publically backed the latest education report by Policy Exchange, setting out how standards can continue to be raised in state schools. Completing the Revolution set out how using textbooks produced by respected third-parties like the British Museum can improve the quality of teaching while reducing the time teachers have to spend preparing for lessons. The idea builds upon other school reforms pioneered by Policy Exchange, including free schools and the pupil premium.
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