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”. Just this week 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.
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.
Previously Building More, Building Beautiful has been praised by the Prime Minister when speaking at the Policy Exchange Summer Party. The report’s foreword was written by Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, who also delivered his first speech on housing to Policy Exchange.
In the first of a series by Policy Exchange experts reflecting on the Chequers Agreement and Brexit White Paper, our Chief Economic Adviser Dr Graham Gudgin reflects on their implications for the Irish border. Dr Gudgin, a former Special Adviser to the Northern Irish First Minister and leading expert on issues around the border, concludes that if the White Paper’s recommendations are implemented, the Northern Irish border ‘problem’ is largely solved.
The Prime Minister paid tribute to Policy Exchange’s successful track record of policy innovation, saying “can I give a sincere thanks to Policy Exchange for everything that you’ve been doing because its 16 years now that you’ve been making the case for a modern compassionate reforming conservatism. And if we just look at some of the ideas you’ve brought forward – free schools, police and crime commissioners – you’ve actually championed some of the defining policies of the last decade… I’m really interested in the report you’ve brought out today. I’ve long said that design quality is, I think, actually one of the keys to new housing, and can I just say that it’s important you carry on because there’s a real battle of ideas today because, let’s face it, the world is changing fast.”
In a wide ranging speech at Policy Exchange this morning, Environment Secretary Michael Gove challenged think tanks and politicians to tackle today’s economic problems, saying that “while capitalism has brought both growth and progress in the past, it is not delivering now.” He called for a new approach which “should place the importance of protecting, enhancing and growing natural capital at its heart”. Mr Gove also paid tribute to Policy Exchange’s work across a range of issues, saying that “the practical solutions Policy Exchange has developed have been implemented in Government and have made a profound difference for the better”.
Policy Exchange hosted a major conference considering the future of the Union, with keynote speeches from Ruth Davidson, Alistair Darling, Michael Gove, Arlene Foster, Brandon Lewis, Jim Murphy and Theresa Villiers. In bringing together speakers from different parties, different nations and opposite sides of the Brexit debate, we demonstrated that unionism can be the bridge between the different elements in our divided society. We also published The State of the Union, a new paper by Professor Arthur Aughey of Ulster University, in which he says that the United Kingdom is a remarkably enduring constitutional arrangement and a surprisingly cohesive national state.
In this new Policy Exchange paper Brexit and the British Growth Model, Dr Christopher Bickerton of Cambridge University argues that post-Brexit we need a new approach to and understanding of economic growth which moves away from a reliance on consumption. He advocates a new social settlement to mediate the relations between individuals, the state and markets.
A economy-wide carbon tax paid by both domestic and international producers would prevent carbon leakage, level the playing field for Britain’s heavy industry, fund a dividend to be paid to taxpayers and tackle climate change, argues the new report from Policy Exchange’s influential Energy unit, The Future of Carbon Pricing: Implementing an independent carbon tax with dividends in the UK. A better approach would reduce the cost of decarbonisation, prevent the offshoring of emissions and make carbon pricing popular.
The UK cannot be complacent about the continuing existence of NATO: a world without the alliance would be even more fractious and less secure, while giving up on NATO would be “whimsical, reckless, self-harming and self-defeating”, argues a new Policy Exchange paper, Remaking the Case for NATO: Collective Security and the British National Interest ahead of this week’s crucial summit in Brussels.
Policy win for Policy Exchange but Government’s insistence for good design should also be extended to style
Policy Exchange’s Place Research Fellow, Jack Airey, assesses the Government’s new planning framework and its implications for the design and style of new homes.
Policy Exchange’s Economics Research Fellow, Jan Zeber, looks at the EU Commission’s multi-billion euro fine of Google and asks if it really reflects the best way to protect consumers.
Policy Exchange’s Head of Economics Warwick Lightfoot – former Special Adviser to three Chancellors – assesses the Government’s Brexit White Paper and finds room for improvement.
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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- Thursday, 28 June, 2018
13:00 - 14:30
Secretary of State for International Development Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP and Brigadier John Deverell spoke on the strategic role of soft power, outlining how her vision for the future of UK development policy applies in the context of civilian–military cooperation, the interplay between hard and soft power, and the importance of development’s role alongside defence and diplomacy.
- Wednesday, 13 June, 2018
13:00 - 14:30
Launching his new book, The Muslim Brotherhood and the West: A History of Enmity and Engagement, Policy Exchange’s Co-head of Extremism and Security Dr Martyn Frampton, provided an overview of the charged relationship between one of the world’s largest political Islamist movements and the Western powers. He was joined for a discussion by chairman of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee Tom Tugendhat MP and Sir John Jenkins, former British Ambassador to Saudi Arabia.
- Tuesday, 5 June, 2018
8:00 - 9:30
In his valedictory speech as Chief of the Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stuart Peach reflected on the unprecedented range of threats faced by the United Kingdom and the commitments undertaken by the armed forces around the world. He said he was “deeply uncomfortable” about the prosecution of veterans for their past service, an area of work pioneered by Policy Exchange in The Fog of Law. He called for greater flexibility around armed forces careers and more focus on engineering and modern languages.