Legatum Institute

Press Releases

CEE is a region at a cross roads – strategic choices made now will determine future growth


CEE is a region at a cross roads – strategic choices made now will determine future growth

  • CEE is thriving: as a single country, it would be the 38th most prosperous in the world; however, it ranks only 44th in terms of economic openness
  • Demographic decline, continued brain drain and disruptive technological changes pose challenges to future growth 
  • Three different zones of prosperity have emerged - the Baltic ‘entrepreneurial sea’, the central “industrial hinterlands”, and a southeast “food hub” - each with a distinctly different path in future 
  • To foster further prosperity, CEE countries must look beyond existing partners and technologies to either integrate or invent, or best of all, do both
  • Prosperity has to be home grown, depending on a range of competitive small and medium businesses
  • The digital and information age puts “creative adaptation” at the heart of business and government transformation

Recent Press Releases

Social Metrics Commission launches a new measure of UK poverty

Monday, 17 September 2018

  • Independent commission unites poverty experts and thinkers from the left and right with new poverty metric
  • Metric accounts for the inescapable costs that reduce people’s spending power and the liquid assets that can be used to alleviate people’s immediate poverty
  • New data shows who is poor now and how that has changed over time, to provide a clear focus for policy makers.
The Social Metrics Commission (SMC) is an independent commission founded in 2016, that has brought together thinkers from the right and left with data and analytical experts to develop a new approach to measuring poverty. Currently there is no agreed UK government measure of poverty and the SMC’s mission is to provide a new consensus around poverty measurement that enables action, informs policy making and so improves the lives of people in poverty, in real ways.       
For the first time, as well as looking at incomes, the new metric accounts for a range of inescapable costs that reduce people’s spending power, and the positive impact of people’s liquid assets on alleviating immediate poverty. These inescapable costs include rent or mortgage payments, childcare and the extra costs of disability. Liquid assets include savings, stocks and shares. The new metric reflects more accurately the realities and experiences of living in poverty than previous measures.

We must tackle the adolescent mental health crisis now if young people are to fulfil their vast potential

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

The UK should encourage greater parental involvement, support in schools and community-based networks for young people, drawing on the experience of Iceland, according to a new report by the Legatum Institute.

The post-millennial generation is uniquely well qualified to make a good future for themselves and all of us. However, it is also clear that they will do so only if we create the right environment for them.

If post-millennials are to benefit from the explosion of innovation and opportunity that our age is seeing, we need to recognise that the age of adolescence and emerging adulthood needs deliberate attention.

This attention needs to come from society as a whole, not just from government. To affect a generation positively, everyone—family, civil society, schools, government and businesses—needs to be committed if we are to make a real difference.

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It is time to accept that the refugee crisis is the humanitarian challenge of our generation

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Refugees and migrants face unacceptable risks from trafficking, forced prostitution and forced labour according to a new study by the Legatum Institute.

The report, published to mark UN World Refugee Day, examines the evolving nature of the so-called ‘irregular’ journeys of refugees and migrants, the factors motivating them, and the risks they face in transit. It finds that governments around the world are lacking the data with which to assess the scale and severity of the challenge, preventing them from formulating an effective policy response. It suggests that our current approaches to accommodating displaced people are outdated and need to change in order to reflect the plethora of evolving factors that shape migration.

Read the full press release here.

Charity Commission closes its case into the Legatum Institute Foundation

Thursday, 31 May 2018

The Charity Commission has closed its case into the Legatum Institute Foundation, concluding that the Institute operates independently and has systems in place which are designed to ensure that its research and publications show balance and neutrality.

The Commission’s report also concluded that the Institute upholds its educational objects by engaging with individuals from across the political spectrum, both through its programme of events and its research, and has sought to ensure a diverse range of views in its activities. 

The focus of the Commission’s questions was a report published by the Institute in November 2017, entitled Brexit Inflection Point: The Pathway to Prosperity. In examining this report, the Commission concluded that research into the framework of the Brexit negotiations did fall within the Institute’s remit as an educational charity, and therefore was a legitimate area of research for the Institute to examine. 

The Commission’s concluded that due to the current political sensitivities relating to the issue of Brexit and UK trade policy, this particular report crossed a line and “may be seen as promoting a political view”. As a result the Commission requested that the report be removed from the Institute’s website.

Commenting on the Commission’s Case Report, the Institute’s Chair of Trustees, Alan McCormick said:

“We are pleased that the Commission has concluded its review of the Legatum Institute. As a board, the trustees take very seriously the Institute’s responsibility to educate the general public about how individuals, communities and nations can create the pathways from poverty to prosperity.

“Over the past five months we have worked closely with the Commission, pro-actively reporting relevant information and answering all questions posed to us. We are pleased to see the official recognition on the part of the Commission that the Institute operates independently and that we have systems in place, which are designed to ensure balance and neutrality in our research and educational work.

“We acknowledge the Commission’s conclusion that the Brexit Inflection report crossed a line – from the Institute’s perspective, this was wholly unintentional. In addition, we understand, and will fulfil, the Commission’s request to remove the report from our website. 

By closing the case, the Commission has affirmed the high standards of the Legatum Institute and cleared the way for it to get on with its mission.”


You can read the Commission's case report in full here.

Our Senior Fellow Danny Kruger takes up new senior advisory role in Government

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Today we say goodbye to Danny Kruger MBE, who has been appointed as the Government's new civil society tsar.

Danny, who led the Legatum Institute's The Country We Want To Be programme, will be joining the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport as an Expert Adviser for Civil Society, working with Secretary of State Matt Hancock.

This builds on Danny's extensive work at the Legatum Institute, which focused on creating the strong and inclusive society Britain needs if it is to address the challenges of the twenty-first century, and build a lasting legacy of prosperity for this and future generations.

Commenting on Danny's departure, our CEO, Philippa Stroud, said: "I am delighted that Danny has been asked to take his ideas, talents and vision from the Legatum Institute into Government. He is a passionate advocate of creating more just, integrated and connected communities, and we wish him all the best in helping shape the Government's civil society agenda."


Residents should take ownership of the Grenfell Tower Estate

Monday, 12 March 2018

Community ownership through a Community Land Trust could be a way forward for the Lancaster West Estate (excluding the site of the Tower itself which is subject to a separate process).

A new report from the Legatum Institute and Create Streets suggests:

  • For too long the development and management of estates like the Lancaster West has been carried out without the local community having real power over the decisions that affect their neighbourhood.
  • The response of the community in the immediate aftermath of the fire shows that it has the capability to decide the future of the estate.
  • All those displaced by the fire should have the right to a tenancy on the same terms as they had before the fire, either on the Lancaster West Estate or close by.
  • Furthermore, if residents support the idea, the ownership of the estate could be passed to the local community through the establishment of a Community Land Trust.
  • Any new homes created on the estate – which will only happen with the support of residents – should be available at social rent or affordable to those on average local incomes.

Read the full press release here.

Shanker Singham to leave the Legatum Institute for new role at the IEA

Friday, 9 March 2018

Shanker Singham, Director of Economic Policy and Prosperity Studies at The Legatum Institute, is leaving for a new role at the Institute for Economic Affairs (IEA).

Commenting on Shanker’s departure, Philippa Stroud, CEO of the Legatum Institute, said:

“Since arriving at the Legatum Institute in early 2016, Shanker has done more than anyone to put the crucial issue of trade on the political agenda. He has been instrumental in educating the public on the importance of free trade, and its transformative impact on the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people.  

“We wish him all the very best for the future with Mark Littlewood and our friends at the IEA as he continues his important work on the UK’s future trading relationships after Brexit, which is fundamental to the people and prosperity of our nations. I am immensely proud of the work of Shanker and his team in illustrating how trade can provide a pathway from poverty to prosperity, for individuals, communities and nations around the world.

“Shanker’s talents and energy will be sorely missed by all of us at LI. But I look forward to continuing our work on international trade as part of our vibrant research programme addressing the key challenges of our generation, from safeguarding refugees and victims of trafficking to re-imagining international development.”

Shanker Singham, commenting on his departure, said:

“I am sorry to be leaving so many friends and colleagues at the Legatum Institute. During my time there we have made great progress towards helping the public understand why trade is so important to improve the quality of life of people all over the world.

“I look forward to continuing this work at the IEA, making the case for a new and independent British trade policy after Brexit, one that can catalyse a resurgence in free trade across the globe.”


Mr Singham will start work at the IEA later this month. The Legatum Institute’s work on international trade and anti-competitive practices, including the Special Trade Commission, will continue under new stewardship, to be announced shortly.

Gisela Stuart and Sir Oliver Letwin to join the Legatum Institute as fellows

Monday, 15 January 2018

The Legatum Institute is delighted to announce the appointment of Gisela Stuart and Sir Oliver Letwin as Fellows, leading two key programmes examining challenges to UK and global prosperity.

Gisela Stuart joins the Institute as Chair of our Effective Government programme, which examines what the UK can learn from the most successful models of government in operation around the world, in order to improve the outcomes of key public services, from health and social care to education.

Sir Oliver Letwin joins the Institute to lead The World Ahead, an exciting new initiative which examines how the rise of India and China during the course of the twenty-first century can transform the lives of billions, ending widespread poverty and fostering a new era of stability and prosperity.

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