The society we want Archives | Rethinking Poverty

The society we want

Rethinking Poverty has identified three key elements in any vision for a good society: the place we want, the state we want, and the business we want. If we have all three, we will have the society we want. Here we explore what these three elements of a good society might look like and how we might achieve them.

#BuildBackBetter

By Barry Knight

07 Apr 2020

Coronavirus has changed our world forever. Plans made a few weeks ago seem outdated at best or undoable at worst. The speed of this has been remarkable. In a...

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Will individualism survive the Coronavirus?

By Stuart Cartland

26 Mar 2020

The current national and global crisis in which we find ourselves has exposed the myth that a society based upon individualism can work, flourish and be sustainable. We can...

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‘Sorry we missed you’ reveals the sorry state of our society

By Barry Knight

15 Jan 2020

‘I feel in complete shock. At the end I thought my heart had stopped.’ So read a text sent by a friend of mine as she left the cinema...

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The society we want: next steps for Rethinking Poverty

By Caroline Hartnell and Barry Knight

07 Jan 2020

There is widespread agreement across the political spectrum that capitalism is in crisis and we need a new way of doing things. ‘Read the Economist and the Financial Times,’ wrote Michael Jacobs...

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Tyne & Wear Citizens launches listening campaign

By Barry Knight

18 Dec 2019

In December 2018, Barry Knight attended Tyne & Wear Citizens AGM, describing it as the ‘most remarkable meeting he had ever attended’. A year later, he attended the 2019... Read More

Our ‘turn around’ towns are re-imagining the future

By Issy Petrie

11 Dec 2019

What will our towns be like in ten years’ time? And how about in 100 years? As we begin a decade that will bring significant change to the UK,... Read More

The #hullwewant goes to Russia

By Barry Knight, Maria Chertok, Natasha Kaminarskaya

10 Dec 2019

What does Hull, a city on the eastern seaboard of England, have in common with provincial cities in Russia?  Answer: not only have they been left behind by economic... Read More

Talking Points: November 2019 

By Rethinking Poverty

04 Dec 2019

This month’s Talking Points focuses on the way our economy works: the role of business in society, Wales’s ground-breaking Foundational Economy model, and the primacy of the local, for... Read More

A stitch in time saves nine: Learning from Blackpool

By Barry Knight

27 Nov 2019

Important lessons emerged from a one-day conference ‘Transforming Blackpool together: how evidence is changing our town’, held at the Blackpool Winter Gardens on 14 November. Frank Oberklaid, a paediatrician... Read More

CLES manifesto sets out how the next government can truly serve people, places and planet

19 Nov 2019

The Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) has launched ‘The manifesto for local economies’, setting out a vision for ‘how the next government should create local economies that serve... Read More

Breaking From Tradition – Why We Must Embrace The National Performance Framework

By Anna Fowlie

13 Nov 2019

To coincide with the 10 year anniversary of the publication of the Report by the Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress, the Carnegie UK Trust... Read More

Talking Points: October 2019

By Rethinking Poverty

06 Nov 2019

This month’s Talking Points looks at a variety of ideas for improving people’s lives – from good architecture to kindness and a newly woven social fabric. We also look... Read More

Can we afford NOT to pay for the Green New Deal?

By Caroline Hartnell

06 Nov 2019

On 5 November, 11,000 scientists endorsed a ‘World Scientists’ Warning of a Climate Emergency’, published in the journal Bioscience. The ‘warning’ pulls no punches: ‘We declare … clearly and... Read More

Put people at the heart of the green transition, argue IPPR and WWF

05 Nov 2019

The IPPR and WWF have published a collection of essays, Putting people at the heart of the green transition, which sets out what ‘a Green New Deal (GND) could... Read More

Webinars explore 45° Change: Where bottom up meets top down

By Global Fund for Community Foundations

01 Nov 2019

The upcoming “Pathways to Power” Symposium aims to take discussions around #ShiftThePower to the next stage by developing strategies to make the idea a reality. One promising approach is... Read More

Shifting the fundamentals

By Claire McCarthy

30 Oct 2019

The world of work is changing. The work of the Changing Work Centre and the Commission on Workers and Technology demonstrates that. For many that brings a sense of... Read More

How can public policy support an ‘infrastructure of kindness’ in Scotland?

24 Oct 2019

A new report from Carnegie UK, Public policy and the infrastructure of kindness in Scotland, explores the decision to put kindness at the centre of the Scottish National Performance... Read More

Does “The Wigan Deal” anticipate a more radical future?

23 Oct 2019

 “The Wigan Deal” beats austerity by putting unique human relationships at the core. Does it anticipate a more radical future too? This affecting, even moving video above comes... Read More

How community businesses can help build an inclusive economy

22 Oct 2019

A new report from the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) and Power to Change, Building an inclusive economy through community business, ‘explores how community businesses can support the... Read More

Our future depends on co-operation

By Ed Mayo

16 Oct 2019

It is a time of great distraction. Our plans to leave the European Union are burning, our government is fiddling with its leadership and, while it makes for news... Read More

Rewilding a key pillar in our fight against global heating

11 Oct 2019

Green New Deal for Nature, by Simon Lewis, of University College London and University of Leeds, forms part of Common Wealth’s Green New Deal (GND) series. The report advocates... Read More

Too little, too late? Reflections on the 20 September climate strike

By Caroline Hartnell

02 Oct 2019

The introductory statement to the UN Climate Action Summit on 23 September 2019 makes chilling reading, though it insists that there are still solutions available: ‘The last four years... Read More

Shifting ownership to avoid climate catastrophe

26 Sep 2019

Johanna Bozuwa and Carla Skandier of Democracy Collaborative have contributed to Common Wealth’s series on the Green New Deal with their piece, Shifting Ownership for the Energy Transition in... Read More

45° Change shows the way

By Jon Edwards

25 Sep 2019

The core premise of Neal Lawson’s ‘45° Change’ is that the post-1945 welfare state approach to dealing with societal challenges has broken down. The neoliberal, market-driven system that has... Read More

How Community Wealth Building can help the Green New Deal

24 Sep 2019

Last month we announced the launch of Common Wealth’s Green New Deal project, a series of reports that will aim to serve as a ‘comprehensive road map for a... Read More

Report advocates shorter working hours for improved well-being

19 Sep 2019

A new report, How to achieve shorter working hours, commissioned by the Labour Party and written by Lord Skidelsky, was published last week. It argues that ‘a reduction in... Read More

Reinventing social services

By Bob Rhodes

18 Sep 2019

As part of its Manifesto for Social Care Reform, the Centre Welfare Reform proposes a radical reinvention of social services and the reintegration and refocusing of social work on... Read More

We need to transform our institutions to deliver a Green New Deal

12 Sep 2019

Common Wealth have published another report in their Green New Deal series, this time looking at political movements and institutions. Written by Miatta Fahnbulleh of the New Economics Foundation,... Read More

CLES on a new paradigm for regeneration

10 Sep 2019

The Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) have published the second provocation in their new series, ‘CLES on… regeneration’, arguing regeneration needs recalibration ‘in order to root the development... Read More

Publicly owned energy for a Green New Deal

05 Sep 2019

Common Wealth have recently published the report Why We Need Publicly Owned Energy for a Green New Deal. Written by Cat Hobbs, founder and director of We Own It,... Read More

CLES on achieving genuine progressive devolution

04 Sep 2019

The Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) have launched a new series of provocations, ‘CLES on…’, drawing on their thirty years’ experience of ‘working to develop stronger local economics... Read More

Road Map to a Green New Deal: From Extraction to Stewardship

By Mathew Lawrence

03 Sep 2019

Executive summary Tinkering at the margins of an economic model driving environmental breakdown is guaranteed to deepen the climate emergency. To thrive, only a systemic response to a systems... Read More

How ‘meanwhile use’ is opening doors in declining high streets

By Thomas Barrett

07 Aug 2019

We are all familiar with the gaps in high streets left as stores close. This article from New Start describes a pilot scheme called Open Doors, to be launched later this year,... Read More

Housing in 2040

By Sally Thomas

29 Jul 2019

Reflections from the 2019 annual conference of the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) Our annual conference looked at the future of housing, focusing on our tenants, homes, communities... Read More

How CLES and Preston City Council ‘built community wealth in Preston’

24 Jul 2019

A new publication from the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) ‘tells the story of community wealth building (CWB) in Preston’, reflecting on eight years of collaboration. CLES set... Read More

Building communities for the Scotland we want

By Barry Knight

24 Jun 2019

What follows is the text of a speech given by Barry Knight at a conference of the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) on 12 June 2019. The speech... Read More

‘Time to Build an Inclusive Economy’ in Northern Ireland

12 Jun 2019

A new charter, Time to Build an Inclusive Local Economy ‘sets out key steps to harness the power of communities to create resilient local economies’. Developed by Development Trusts... Read More

Reimagining the Economy: The Social Justice Enterprise

By Aaron Tanaka

23 May 2019

Editors’ note: In this article, Aaron Tanaka, director of the Center for Economic Democracy and cofounder of the Boston Ujima Project, envisions a new approach for economic development that is... Read More

CLES reports on New Municipalism in London

09 May 2019

CLES last month released a new publication, New Municipalism in London, which highlights ‘the actions of three London Boroughs who are seeking to challenge traditional local economic development and... Read More

Is protest the new form of politics? Tyne & Wear Citizens offer a different model

By Barry Knight

08 May 2019

Barry Knight attends an assembly of Tyne & Wear Citizens to meet the candidates in the North of Tyne mayoral elections Something is stirring. A new populism is on... Read More

Communities in control: a local democracy laboratory

By Roy Payne

16 Apr 2019

The government’s new Working with Communities policy is important because it establishes the principle of ‘community consent’ to long-term planning decisions affecting the local community. This has the potential... Read More

Creating a shared vision to reduce inequality in Oxford

By Caroline Hartnell

28 Mar 2019

On 1 March I met with a group of people from Oxford – city council officials, an elected councillor and staff of social enterprise Aspire Oxford – to talk... Read More

The Blackpool We Want For Our Children

By Barry Knight

22 Mar 2019

What follows is the text of a speech given by Barry Knight at a one-day conference in Blackpool on 22 March 2019. The objective of the conference was to... Read More

Community wealth building – what is it all about?

By Caroline Hartnell

30 Jan 2019

What is community wealth building (CWB)? On the one hand, it seems like a new idea. The Labour Party established its CWB Unit less than a year ago, on... Read More

Creating a new narrative for a good society – lessons from Letchworth

By Rethinking Poverty, Compass, TCPA, University of Hull, UCL

26 Sep 2018

What would a good society look like and how can we achieve it? As described in yesterday’s blog, a small group of people got together in Letchworth Garden City... Read More

What could planning contribute to achieving a good society – lessons from Letchworth

By Rethinking Poverty, Compass, TCPA, University of Hull, UCL

25 Sep 2018

‘Town and country must be married. And out of this joyous union will spring new hope, a new life, a new civilisation.’ Ebenezer Howard, Tomorrow: A Peaceful Path to... Read More

What is the role of business in reducing poverty in the UK?

By Caroline Hartnell

13 May 2016

What is the role of business in reducing poverty? This was the question before a meeting hosted by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Poverty (APPG) and the Webb... Read More