Lieutenant General IB Chun speaking at Policy Exchange

North Korea – Is there a military option?

Leading South Korean General I-B Chun – former head of Korea’s Special Warfare Command – considered whether there is a military solution to the North Korean threat in an event at Policy Exchange. Chun warned that the North’s nuclear capability is not only directed at the United States; that we should all be worried about their cyber capability, indoctrination of children, that China would prefer a nuclear North Korea to a US-influenced state on its border. But he added: “I truly believe that my system of democracy, freedom, respect for human rights is far more powerful than any North Korean nuclear weapon.”

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Black cab rapist John Worboys

Special Briefing on the Worboys Case

Why are elected ministers are powerless in the face of the release of a serious offender? Policy Exchange’s Director of Research Rupert Oldham-Reid explores how politicians and the judiciary have transferred power (and hard decisions) from elected representatives to unelected officials.

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Future farming policy to reward enhancing the environment – as called for by Policy Exchange

Environment Secretary Michael Gove has announced that a post-Brexit agricultural policy will reward farmers for public goods rather than acreage – as recommended in Policy Exchange’s Farming Tomorrow. The paper says that flood prevention, tree planting and biodiversity should all be subsidised rather than food production.

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Cable and submarine

Chief of Defence Staff echoes Policy Exchange warning on undersea cables

The Chief of the UK Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stuart Peach, has echoed Policy Exchange’s warnings about potential threats to the undersea communications cables that are vital to the internet and international commerce in the annual Chief of Defence Staff Lecture at the Royal United Services Institute. Sir Stuart’s comments come less than two weeks after the publication of our report Undersea Cables: Indispensable, insecure, which highlights that 97% of global communications and $10 trillion in daily financial transactions are transmitted by cables – but that those cables are highly vulnerable to attack from hostile states or terrorists.

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Washington Conference

New Anglo-American project launched with high-level conference in Washington

Policy Exchange launched our new Anglo-American project with a high level conference in Washington to debate US-UK Relations in a Changing World. Both the US National Security Adviser Lt Gen HR McMaster and the National Security Adviser to the British Prime Minister, Mark Sedwill CMG, spoke at the event – the first time the two holders of these positions have appeared together in public. The event attracted widespread media coverage including from Bloomberg, Newsweek, ABC News, Voice of America, Washington Times, The National, Mail Online and the New York Times.

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Administrative Justice and the Parliament Square Axis

In a new paper for Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project, Professor Carol Harlow QC (Hon) looks at the problem of the judicialisation of administrative justice. After a homeless refugee turned down a flat on the grounds that the shape of its windows remind her of the prison in Iran where she was tortured, a housing officer concluded that this ended the local authority’s obligation to house her. That decision was then reviewed by one county court judge, three Court of Appeal judges, and five Supreme Court justices. The Supreme Court’s involvement was necessary to rebuff attempts by the European Court of Human Rights to judicialise administrative law and practice. Professor Harlow’s paper commends the Supreme Court’s approach, arguing that it shows how domestic judges and lawmakers can form a “Parliament Square Axis” to limit European judicial overreach.

UK Strategy in Asia: some starting principles

Following the Prime Minister’s visit to Japan last week, Policy Exchange’s Britain in the World Project publish a report by unit head John Bew and David Martin Jones, Visiting Fellow at Policy Exchange. They advise that Asia is of growing strategic importance to the UK’s long-term prosperity but this is likely to mean more involvement in the region’s security problems. The first principle of UK involvement in Asia must be to bolster existing alliances and to preserve the existing international order, but it must be understood that this is likely to cause tension when it comes to relations with China.

Farming Tomorrow

This major new Policy Exchange report sets out the once in a generation opportunity that Brexit offers our nation to reform its agricultural and environmental policy. Since 1973, UK farm and food policies have conformed to the rules and objectives of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) — the EU’s principal policy programme. Doing so has, at great expense, reduced Britain’s agricultural productivity by lessening competition and supporting inefficient farmers. It has also increased costs for consumers. This report outlines opportunities to improve policy by focusing on four main interest groups: consumers, producers, the wider rural economy, and the environment. This report offers timely and comprehensive analysis and answers to some of the most pressing policy questions of our day.

The secret to cheaper energy – it’s all in the cost curve

The cost of energy is frequently cited as one of the issues voters care about most, but how can we bring costs down? Various new electricity generation technologies, like wave energy, tidal lagoons and small modular nuclear reactors, stand on the precipice of mass deployment. But industry alone may not be willing or able to make the leap from demonstration and commercial deployment. Should the Government intervene to help bridge the gap? In this article originally published in Business Green, Policy Exchange Research Fellow Matt Rooney explores the concept of ‘technological learning’. Can other technologies replicate the success of solar panels and wind turbines to bring costs down and make them competitive with established technologies?

The new US National Security Strategy: implications for UK National Security Policy

Reviewing Lt Gen McMaster’s keynote speech at Policy Exchange’s Anglo-American conference, Professor John Bew highlights how the new American National Security Strategy will refocus on ‘competitive engagement’, providing support for friendly countries on America’s security frontier while requesting greater ‘reciprocity’ from US allies. Professor Bew also suggests how this should be interpreted by the UK’s ongoing Capability Review. Read more here.

Britain, her balance of payments, and the benefits of a flexible exchange rate and open economy

Policy Exchange’s Head of Economics – and former Special Adviser to three chancellors – Warwick Lightfoot highlights new analysis from the Bank of England that show the UK’s foreign investments have enabled it to withstand a deterioration in the her balance of payments. Coupled with a reduction in the exchange rate, the continuing strength of the UK’s foreign investments means she will be able to weather future economic storms and capitalise on the opportunities presented by Brexit.

Latest News

Policy Exchange welcomes Hon James Mattis

Policy Exchange was delighted to welcome Hon James Mattis, US Secretary of Defense, to our offices. Secretary Mattis discussed the current global situation, a situation which includes the threats posed by North Korea and a Russia seeking to challenge the territorial integrity of its neighbours. He also spoke of the enduring importance of the UK–US Alliance and of Britain’s continued moral voice on the world stage, as Policy Exchange argued for in The Cost of Doing Nothing. He also praised Policy Exchange’s record of thought leadership in making the case for a Global Britain’s continued commitment to NATO.

Where is the line between extremism and terrorism?

Writing for the Evening Standard, Policy Exchange’s Co-Head of Security and Extremism Hannah Stuart challenges suggestions by new terrorism watchdog Max Hill QC that IS fighters returning from Syria are “naive” and should be “reintegrated”. Are they really “disillusioned”, she asks — or, as the caliphate crumbles, are these IS fighters merely running out of options?” Stuart argues that we have the legal armoury we need to deal these fighters, but that we need to use it more effectively. She also warns Max Hill QC against meeting Islamist groups who crave the legitimacy such meetings bestow.

David Anderson QC endorses Policy Exchange report on countering online extremism

The former Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation David Anderson Q.C. endorsed Policy Exchange’s recent report on online extremism, ‘The New Netwar’, whilst speaking alongside the Home Secretary Rt. Hon. Amber Rudd MP. During a Spectator and Sky fringe event on freedom and security in the age of the internet at Conservative Party Conference, Anderson cited our findings on Islamic States’s online strategy and suggested that the Home Secretary consider our recommendation that Ofcom take an independent regulatory role towards tech companies and extremist content online.


  • Thursday, 7 September, 2017
    18:00 - 19:30

A discussion with John Godfrey (Former Director of Policy at No 10), Fraser Nelson (Editor of the Spectator), Terrie Alafat (The Chartered Institute of Housing), Phillip Barnes (Barratt Developments Plc), and Susan Emmett (Head of Policy Exchange’s Housing Unit).



Lecture Theatre, Institute of Mechanical Engineers, One Birdcage Walk, Westminster, London, SW1H 9JJ, United Kingdom

  • Monday, 17 July, 2017
    18:00 - 19:30

Policy Exchange hosted Professor Richard Tuck, one of the world’s leading historians of ideas, to set out the case for Brexit as the best opportunity for the Left to bring about pure socialism. Labour MP Caroline Flint delivered the vote of thanks, in which she cautioned her colleagues that “We cannot spend the next 18 months voting down every one of the Tories’ EU Bills. If we do so, we will look like liars” in remarks covered by the Express, the Sun and Total Politics.



Policy Exchange, 6th Floor, 8 – 10 Great George St, Westminster, London, SW1P 3AE

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