Project asks us to imagine a fairer Britain by 2027

Published: 9 October 2017 at 14:10

Imagine 2027 logo

Labour History Research Unit and Cambridge Commons collaborate on programme

An ambitious project to discover what kind of Britain we would like to live in ten years from now has been launched by Anglia Ruskin University’s Labour History Research Unit, in collaboration with Cambridge Commons.

The programme, called imagine2027, is aimed at building social fairness across the country. It will feature 12 free events, all held at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, where thought-leaders will apply their expertise to explain how Britain can become a better and fairer country by 2027.

Afterwards imagine2027 will produce a compendium based on the talks, setting out a coherent, holistic vision of this fairer future, and hold a national convention in late 2018 looking at how to make this vision a reality.

The talks begin on Thursday, 12 October with “A socially just economy in the year 2027” delivered by Ann Pettifor, Director of Prime (Policy Research in Macroeconomics), fellow of the New Economics Foundation and a member of Labour’s Economic Advisory Committee.

On Thursday 19 October Danny Dorling, Professor of Human Geography at the University of Oxford, will speak on “Education, Equality and Everything Else: A Fairer England in 2027”.

The series continues in November with events featuring Sir Michael Marmot (Professor of Epidemiology at University College London and Director of the Institute of Health Equity), Helen Margetts (Director of the Oxford Internet Institute and Professor of Society and the Internet) and Ava Vidal (stand-up comedian, commentator and former prison officer).

Speakers in 2018 include Guy Standing (on basic income), Hermann Hauser (on technology for social good), Baroness Helena Kennedy QC (on access to justice) and Owen Jones (on social inclusion).

Rohan McWilliam, Professor of Modern British History and Director of Anglia Ruskin’s Labour History Research Unit, said:

“The mission of the Labour History Research Unit is to combine academic expertise with the promotion of new ideas in progressive politics, and imagine2027 will see us tackle issues concerning the economy, health, education and gender differences.

“The imagine2027 series asks a simple question: what kind of country do we want to live in ten years from now? To begin answering this, we have assembled a group of high-profile speakers including one of the country’s top economists, Ann Pettifor, and Professor Danny Dorling, one of the leading authorities on social inequality in the UK.

“However, the imagine2027 events will be more than a series of talks.  They are intended to be participatory events where audience members discuss the issues and develop ideas about the new politics. Each event will build together and lead to wider forms of dissemination including a publication.”

Following each talk there will be a discussion chaired by David Howarth, Professor of Law and Public Policy at the University of Cambridge. Professor Howarth has been both an MP and Councillor in Cambridge, has served in various shadow and select committee roles, and is a member of the UK Electoral Commission.

Each event is free to attend but online booking is required. Further details about imagine2027 are available at the website