3rd March 2020

Carers and Employment

In Partnership with Carers UK

The impact of unpaid caring on the everyday life of working age people is a critical and growing issue in society. As retirement age rises, people live for longer, and social care options are reduced, many of us may find ourselves providing unpaid care for a family member or friend during our working lives. This can have severe consequences, including a struggle to balance work with caring commitments, which may lead to stress-induced health problems and ultimately voluntary or involuntary loss of employment.
Caring also impacts employers and the state through loss of skilled workers and associated revenue, as well as costs associated with recruitment and unplanned absences. Through advocacy by Carers UK and Employers for Carers, policymakers and employers have begun to implement change to improve carers’ rights and available support in the workplace but more needs to be done.

To read the full consultation report click here.

17th November 2019

Post-Liberal Renewal

The last few decades have been dominated by social and economic liberalism. The economic and political shocks of the recession and the vote to leave the EU have exposed the limitations of this consensus. Blue Labour and Red Tory provided initial accounts of the crisis and a possible way out, but neither has yet generated lasting change. The political space in the country still exists, however, and this Windsor gathering bought together senior thinkers across the political aisle to clarify our diagnosis and begin to build a movement to respond to the contemporary challenges we face.

14th November 2019

Community Wealth Building

In partnership with Local Trust

The event discussed different approaches to community wealth building. Drawing on international practice, including the work of the Democracy Collaborative in the US, we considered whether and how such approaches might both be adapted and integrated in England to support our most deprived communities.  For the purposes of the consultation, we adopted their definition of community wealth building as  ‘a systems approach to economic development that creates an inclusive, sustainable economy built on locally rooted and broadly held ownership’.

1st October 2019

AI & Healthcare

We explored the potential benefits of applying AI in healthcare, as well as the risks to be faced. AI, as you know has huge implications for medical practitioners and patients alike. It has, for example, the potential to offer innovative solutions to longstanding challenges faced by the NHS by empowering patients to take more responsibility for their own care, so reducing pressure on an overstretched health system.

However, its use also comes with great risks: protection of patient data and the inclusivity of healthcare are just two areas of concern. How can the NHS best weigh the benefits and risks to ensure that all patients have access to the best possible healthcare within a system they can trust? What are the systemic changes facing healthcare provision? What are the attitudinal shifts required by providers and users? During our twenty-four hours together, we will look at how best to harness the potential of AI in healthcare from these and other angles.

The full report from the consultation can be read here

4th September 2019

Challenges for a world where drugs are legally regulated

In partnership with Transform Drugs

Managing the production, supply and use of illicit drugs is one of the most pressing issues facing global policymakers. Despite a continued commitment to the enforcement of prohibition in most of the world, drug markets continue to expand and countries are seeing a dramatic increase in the number of drug-related deaths. At the same time, the violence associated with the illicit drugs trade has continued to grow, with devastating consequences for some of the most vulnerable communities on the planet. 

This consultation bought together a range of international, cross-disciplinary experts to consider the ‘what ifs’ of a post-legalisation landscape. It did not dwell on the arguments for and against legal regulation, but rather considered the challenges and opportunities as reform becomes more widespread. They were seeking the broadest possible range of views, and consideration of the widest range of  actors. They want to move beyond some of the familiar debates about individual rights or the ineffectiveness of current policy to ask what we would need to be prepared for as policy changes. How might it affect the economy? How might we assess benefits and harm? How might we protect vulnerable communities in the developing world? How can we ensure policy protects public health?

The discussion opened the space for a fruitful and constructive exchange of views about the realities of promoting health and social justice in a world where drugs were legally regulated. By doing so, they hope to better inform the current debate on drug policy and ensure that, as things move forward, all the key issues are taken into consideration.

The full report from the consultation can be read here

16th July 2019

Deprived Communities ‘What about the poor?’

In Partnership with Renewal & Reform, Church of England

The Renewal and Reform agenda in the wider Church of England rightly challenges all church communities to give serious prioritisation to proclamation, evangelisation and growth. Some of the most successful models of growth and church planting come from affluent communities, and are rightly championed as toolkits of ideas and innovations to help others facilitate growth.

 A cursory scan of diocesan strategy information on their websites in the Northern Province in early summer 2018 revealed that only one of the twelve Northern dioceses included any intentional proclamation of the gospel and provision of sacramental ministry in deprived communities. Diocesan budgets across post-industrial dioceses are beginning to show huge strain, and traditional models of stipendiary ministry are increasingly untenable, making the poorest parish communities the most vulnerable to amalgamation and closure. What does it say about the Church of England if we do not ring fence investment and prioritise this work in the poorest communities of our mission field. In an era of declining stipendiary posts and financial challenges, surely those who are least able to nurture within themselves vocations and financial resources without support are the ones that ought to be imaginatively protected. It is in these very communities that the greatest need for knowing and hearing about the transformative power of God, to encounter repentance and forgiveness, to understand about new life in Christ, needs to be heard.

Reflecting the work of the Reform and Renewal Estates Evangelism Task Group, the Coastal Towns initiative, and the Low Income Communities Funding review work, this timely consultation intends to raise the statistical and theological implications of the consequence of prioritizing investment of stipendiary resources in the communities most likely to grow numerically and to produce the most return financially.  It allows us to ask the questions of whether abandoning the poorest communities to find the gospel and the sacraments themselves is acceptable and intentional, and to begin to formulate a response.

The full report from the consultation can be read here

15th May 2019

Civic virtues in the public domain

The Jubilee Centre for Character & Virtues consulted a select group about the place and role of civic virtues in the public domain.  This will be an opportunity for individuals to share their knowledge and experience in this area and to participate in the development of a new Statement on Civic Virtues in the Public Domain.

1st April 2019

The Theology of Governance in a Cathedrals Context

Supported by The Church Commissioners

As part of the follow up to the Cathedrals Working Group (CWG), the Third Church Estates Commissioner, in partnership with St George’s House, hosted a consultation on 1st – 2nd April to discuss the theology of governance in a cathedrals context. The consultation was designed to facilitate a conversation between those deans selected by their peers to discuss what theology has to say on the topic of cathedral governance. 

The idea was to use the principles or criteria that emerged to inform a critique of the CWG proposals, with a view to recommending appropriate changes to Synod both through a resulting GSMisc and through the Synodical process.

28th March 2019

Faith and Artificial Intelligence 2

In partnership with Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence

This two-day workshop bought together 30 faith community leaders, scholars and policy-makers, to explore faith perspectives on emerging technologies of Artificial Intelligence, and help religious stakeholders to feedback to their communities who might have questions about the future of the technology and their religion.

 

Understanding the Prevent Strategy
20th March 2019

Understanding the Prevent Strategy: on paper, in practice, in public perception

The Prevent Strategy, set up in 2006 and reviewed in 2011 and 2018, aims to prevent terrorism by targeting people who are deemed vulnerable to radicalisation and is an extremely contested arm of the UK’s counter-terrorism strategy, CONTEST. It.

In a 2017 House of Commons debate James Berry, MP described the ‘two polar opposite views’ on Prevent: one that sees it as an essential and inviolable tool in the fight against terrorism; the other that criticizes its perceived targeting of Muslims and potential to erode rights to privacy and confidentiality. The conflict between these two interpretations is exacerbated by factors including the difficulty in defining radicalization and the lack of concrete information on Prevent referrals due to the confidential nature of its service. In addition, the claim that Prevent has a safeguarding function has been criticized due to a fear that it will lead to securitization of essential services such as health and social care. How is Prevent interacting with these concerns and challenges? Is it effective and fair and what steps can be taken to make it more so? Thought and discussion are needed to answer these questions.