What is the issue?
Our economy has left huge swathes of the country behind. Millions of people feel disenfranchised and ignored. They don’t feel as if they are in control. The 2008 economic crash has accelerated the concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few. And in a world where jobs and money cross borders easily, we have lost our fragile footholds of control over our communities and livelihoods. Especially in the days and weeks that followed this summer’s referendum, Britain’s democratic and economic settlement seemed to be under threat. Yet even in the midst of all this tumult and upheaval, a surge of energy is being generated that can crack open new possibilities for new partnerships in a new economy.
What will the project try to achieve?
The Friends Provident Foundation grant will support the New Economics Foundation’s transformation into a people-powered think tank. Rooted in real lives, workplaces and communities, we will equip people, communities and organisations with the tools they need to make a difference now while changing the economic system. The grant will underpin important and innovative work in areas from new business models to reforming trade unions; local authority innovation; collaborations with campaigning city mayors and in the devolved parliaments and assemblies; and will strengthen our ability to push to the forefront the ideas and energy of social movements. It will support building partnerships, inside and outside the traditional boundaries of politics, with communities, campaigns, trade unions, and businesses that take seriously people’s desire for more control over their lives, the places where they live, and the powerful systems that affect them. The grant will broadly support our work with the sector to frame debate in the media to help win wider backing for fundamental changes to the economy.
Who might be interested in this project?
Our beneficiaries, community groups, campaigning groups and grass roots social movements, trade unions and businesses, policy makers and practitioners, local authorities, other think tanks and research institutes, media commentators and journalists, other funders.