News and Comment


Unleash the creative potential of Social Impact Bonds

Monday April 24 2017

In a previous blog based on my latest advisory trip to Japan, I noted that Japan is currently ‘translating’ the SIB model in order for it to be implemented in a way that is appropriate to its specific social, economic, political and cultural context. I have encouraged Japanese colleagues not to simply think that SIBs… Read More

Japan’s first steps in developing Social Impact Bonds

Thursday April 20 2017

Dr Chih Hoong Sin is in Tokyo for a third year running, this time to find out about the experiences of the Yokohama City Social Impact Bond (SIB) pilot. It has been a real privilege working with a diverse group of stakeholders from the outset as they initially learned about the UK experience in implementing SIBs,… Read More

Working together for a stronger society – Our response to the Lords Select Committee of Charities Report

Thursday April 6 2017

Charities play a vital role in the ongoing social and economic success of the UK. At the same time, funding for charities has changed significantly. Funding received as grants has decreased over time, while contract funding has been increasing dramatically. Our response to the Charities Report shows that charities need better support to build their… Read More


Back to the Future: The Great Exhibition and NESTA’s FutureFest

Friday March 27 2015

NESTA’s FutureFest earlier this month was in some ways a very old fashioned affair. For all its future-gazing, it felt very much in the tradition of the 1851 Great Exhibition, with its mix of wonderment sideshows and learned talks by politicians, innovators, academics and journalists, including Green Party Leader Natalie Bennett and author of ‘The… Read More

Spending the 1%: The potential for participatory budgeting on a national scale

Thursday March 26 2015

The label ‘the 1%’ usually carries connotations of elitism and exclusion when mentioned in a political context, conjuring up images of a super-rich elite lording it over what they might refer to as the ‘hoi polloi’. However, a very different 1% was discussed at a recent event organised by the UK Open Government Civil Society… Read More

25th anniversary guest blog series: A digital future for local government must be shaped by the communities we serve

Tuesday March 17 2015

I recently got into a mini spat on Twitter with a Member of Parliament who sits on the Speaker’s Digital Democracy Commission (DDC) before giving evidence at the House of Commons on the changing nature of representation in a digital age. The MP in question had proudly tweeted: ‘Debate on @digidemocracyuk tomorrow! First time public… Read More