The Week, 15 July 2016

15 July 2016

In her first statement as Prime Minister, Rt Hon Theresa May MP, set out her vision for the future: one of unity and inclusion, one in which people, regardless of their background, can have the opportunity to go as far as their talent and potential will take them. This means not only fighting against injustices and prejudices, but also not leaving behind those who are often forgotten – those people who “can just about manage”.

Eleonora Harwich, Researcher

Reformers of the week

The Department for Education, for enabling schools to save thousands on energy, ICT and multi-functional devices.

Liz Kendall MP, Member for Leicester West, who called for a new approach to business and taxation policy, aiming to encourage long-term investment, in her speech to the Reform Annual Dinner on Wednesday.

Good week for…


On Wednesday, the Department for Culture, Media and Sports, published recommendations by the UK-France Data Innovation Taskforce which seek to stimulate growth and improve society through the use of data.

Increasing pupil performance

On Friday, the Education Endowment Foundation published studies showing that an effective and cheap way to increase pupil performance is by sending text messages to parents reminding them of forthcoming tests, homework to be handed in and giving them a general outline what their children were learning.

Future industrial strategies

Both the new Prime Minister, Rt Hon Theresa May MP, and Liz Kendall MP, have both pointed to the importance of developing sound industrial strategies that will support growth and productivity.

Bad week for…

Prison staff safety

On Monday, The Independent reported that prison officers have been staging unofficial strikes due the drastic increase in inmate violence against them.

The welfare state

On Monday, The Independent reported that a study from the International Longevity Centre ranked the UK 15th out of 23 European welfare states for poverty and social exclusion.

Free early education

On Thursday, Ofsted reported that last year around one third of parents with eligible children in England did not take up the free early education they were entitled to; meaning that about £200 million failed to reach the poorest children for whom it was intended.

Quotes of the week

“We will do everything we can to give you more control over your lives. When we take the big calls, we’ll think not of the powerful, but you. When we pass new laws, we’ll listen not to the mighty but to you. When it comes to taxes, we’ll prioritise not the wealthy, but you. When it comes to opportunity, we won’t entrench the advantages of the fortunate few. We will do everything we can to help anybody, whatever your background, to go as far as your talents will take you.”

The Rt Hon Theresa May MP, Prime Minister, first statement on Wednesday.

“Britain must choose a different path and reform our economy to create a new model of growth, which ensures no-one is left behind.

Theresa May is right to say we need an economy that works for everyone, not just a few at the top; that irresponsible behaviour in big business can no longer be tolerated; and that there is an “unhealthy and often irrational gap between what companies pay their workers and their bosses”.”

Liz Kendall MP, Member for Leicester West, keynote speech at Reform’s Annual Dinner on Wednesday 13 July 2016.

Reform‘s week

On Monday, Rt Hon Matthew Hancock MP, then Minister for the Cabinet Office, and Phil Smith, then CEO of Cisco UK & Ireland, gave a joint lecture laying out their views on digitisation and productivity. This event was held in partnership with Cisco.

On Tuesday, Reform held a roundtable event on a new era of local government finance led by Professor Tony Travers, Director of LSE London at the London School of Economics and Political Science, in partnership with Deloitte.

On Wednesday, Reform published a report in partnership with Big Society Capital on the Work and Health Programme. The report argues that the Department for Work and Pensions must reduce barriers to entry and increase competition in the commissioning process.

Also on Wednesday, Reform held its Annual Dinner with Liz Kendall MP as one keynote speaker.

On Thursday, Reform held a roundtable event on big data led by Paul Maltby, Director of Data at the Government Digital Service, in partnership with HPE.

The Reformer blog

Following from Reform’s health conference, last week, several blogs were published this week by: Chris Hopson, Chief Executive, NHS Providers; Mike Fairbourn, Vice President & General Manager, UK & Ireland, BD; Lord Warner, member, NHS Sustainability Committee and former Minister of State, Department of Health; Professor Paul Corrigan CBE, Adjunct Professor of Health Policy, Imperial College London and former Senior Health Policy Adviser to Tony Blair; Guy Blomfield, Group Chief Executive Officer, Alliance Medical Group; Valerie Bartlett, Deputy Chief Executive, Ashford and St Peter’s NHS Foundation Trust.

Following the publication of Reform’s report on the Work and Health Programme four blogs were authored by: Alexander Hitchcock, Researcher at Reform; Baroness Stedman-Scott OBE, member of the House of Lords Select Committee on Charities; Chris Wright, Chief Executive at Catch22; Kirsty McHugh, Chief Executive, Employment Related Services Association.



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