This week:

We are delighted to announce that the Onward team is growing. Adam Hawksbee will be joining us as Deputy Director from January and Tim Pitt, Toby Lloyd and Ted Christie-Miller are coming on as part-time Policy Fellows. This morning’s Playbook has the story.

Writing for Conservative Home, Matt Leach cites our Social Fabric Index, pointing to the potential of dormant community assets to help boost the levelling up agenda and Turnaround, in arguing for long-term funding and community involvement to aid neighbourhood regeneration.

12 Days of Levelling Up: In the run up to the publication of the Levelling Up White Paper, we’ve been looking back at our reports from the Levelling Up research programme. Head to our twitter for the first 3 days.

Upcoming Events

Further Behind

Further Behind – December 8th, 10:00-11:00

This panel, with John Penrose MP, Rt Hon Esther McVey MP, and Madeline Grant, will discuss further education and levelling up. You can sign up to this event here

Making it smarter

Making it Smarter – January 18th, 11:00-12:00

This event will consider the future of UK manufacturing in light of the digital transformation needed to unlock the sector’s true potential. You can sign up this event here.

Onward Note

When Onward launched in 2018, it was me, a laptop, and my newly-elected former colleague, Neil O’Brien, at the end of the phone. Now we are a small but fantastic team of ten staff, with an office a stone’s throw from Parliament and Neil is putting the final touches to the Government’s Levelling Up White Paper. We have published dozens of reports, scored numerous important policy wins, and successfully identified the shift towards a “politics of belonging” at the last general election. Thank you to everyone who has helped us along the way.

Will Tanner

Today we are announcing the next stage of Onward’s growth. Most importantly, I am delighted to welcome Adam Hawksbee as our incoming Deputy Director. I have known Adam for ten years, having worked together at Reform. In the intervening years, he studied at Harvard, helped numerous US cities with regional policy, and for the last few years has led policy and programmes for Andy Street in the West Midlands. There is no one better qualified to lead our Levelling Up research as the agenda moves from ideas to delivery. 

He will be joined by a number of Policy Fellows, who will support the full-time team and write reports for Onward from time to time. These include some of the brightest thinkers in British politics today, including Tim Pitt, formerly Special Adviser to Chancellor Philip Hammond; Toby Lloyd, who oversaw housing and regeneration policy in Theresa May’s Policy Unit; and Ted Christie-Miller, who is returning to Onward’s net zero programme having left to join BeZeroCarbon earlier this year. 

They will not be the last recruits. We are also in the process of hiring a Head of Science and Technology to lead a new programme of research on making the UK a science superpower, and a Head of Net Zero to deepen our climate research. Get in touch if you would like to apply. We will also shortly announce our first Head of Communications, who will oversee all of Onward’s engagement with news media, social media and Parliament. Internally, James Blagden will become Chief Data Analyst and Francesca Fraser and Alex Luke have been promoted to Senior Researchers. 

This is the right time for us to invest in Onward’s team and grow our influence and impact. Not only will the economy emerge from the pandemic next year, but the Government will need to deliver on critical agendas around levelling up, social fabric, science and technology, and net zero. The prospect of an election will focus minds and instil urgency in Westminster – putting a premium on the kind of practical, politically popular ideas that we are known for.  Please get in touch if you would like to help.

Will Tanner, Director at Onward

Policy Bites

A landmark trade deal announced at the WTO is expected to reduce the cost of global trade for UK businesses in the service sector by £113 billion annually through more lenient licensing and qualifications regulations. Link.

The Government has published its Social Care White Paper, setting out a ten-year vision for adult social care, covering pressing issues such as affordable housing and technological advancement in the caregiving sector. Link

The Prime Minister hosted some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies to strengthen pandemic preparedness in the UK, following big pharma’s announcement of over £0.5 billion in new investment into the UK Life Sciences industry, bringing the total to just over £5 billion since July. Link .

Quick Links

levelling up onward research featured image - Onward Newsletter, 07/21/21
Lessons in levelling up from the Basque country  | Financial Times
When it comes to regeneration, the success of this old industrial region is worth examining.
levelling up onward research featured image - Onward Newsletter, 07/21/21
Lessons in levelling up from the Basque country  | Financial Times
When it comes to regeneration, the success of this old industrial region is worth examining.
dual masthead placeholder 16x9 6a9822c61a - Onward Newsletter, 07/21/21
The Times & The Sunday Times
News and opinion from The Times & The Sunday Times
dual masthead placeholder 16x9 6a9822c61a - Onward Newsletter, 07/21/21
The Times & The Sunday Times
News and opinion from The Times & The Sunday Times
fair funding report onward featured image residential - Onward Newsletter, 07/21/21
Where is Standard of Living the Highest? Local Prices and the Geography of Consumption
Income differences across US cities are well-documented, but little is known about the level of standard of living in each city – defined as the level of market-based consumption….
fair funding report onward featured image residential - Onward Newsletter, 07/21/21
Where is Standard of Living the Highest? Local Prices and the Geography of Consumption
Income differences across US cities are well-documented, but little is known about the level of standard of living in each city – defined as the level of market-based consumption….