Press

Reform's research and commentary is regularly featured in the media. You can find press coverage of Reform's work here.

We are always happy to comment on policy issues relevant to our work. If you would like a quote, an interview, or a background briefing, please email press@reform.uk.

 

Reform

Reform think tank response to HESA widening participation statistics

Reform's response to the publication of the Higher Education Statistics Agency figures on widening participation was covered in The Times (£), The Guardian,  FE News and Cherwell Online

Read the full response below:

Commenting on statistics published this morning by HESA showing little change in participation rates for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, Dr Luke Heselwood, Reform Senior Researcher and author of the report ‘Gaining Access: Increasing the participation of disadvantaged students at elite universities’, said:

“If Ministers want to do better, they should do three things: find a better measure for assessing disadvantage, evaluate universities’ spending on widening participation and campaign to encourage applications from disadvantaged students.”

Research undertaken by Reform in 2018 found considerable discomfort from universities with the current measure used to assess disadvantage, which uses POLAR3 data. The think tank is reiterating it’s call for a new measure for assessing universities progress in improving access, which takes into account key indicators not currently considered, such as Free School Meal status.

Reform is again calling for universities to publish detailed breakdowns of their widening participation spending to the Office for Students, to help understand which programmes are effective and to improve value for money.

The think tank has previously called for a national campaign similar to Better Make Room in the USA, which targets disadvantaged pupils via text and Snap Chat to encourage applications from those with high enough grades.


BBC

BBC, 4 February 2019

Andrew Haldenby, Director at Reform, was quoted in a BBC article about the number of operations the NHS could be doing:

Andrew Haldenby, director of the public services think tank Reform, said: "What is striking is that neither the NHS authorities nor hospitals themselves are doing very much to improve the situation.

"It is possible that the way the government runs the NHS, hospitals are still not under enough pressure to strive for value for money every day."


Reform

Reform reaction to MHCLG rough sleeping statistics

Commenting on statistics published by MHCLG today, Reform Senior Researcher, Dr Luke Heselwood, said:

“Despite making efforts to tackle homelessness, Government departments are at cross purposes with current welfare policy exacerbating the very issue that MHCLG is trying to solve. Eliminating rough sleeping and all forms of homelessness will require a truly multi-agency response.”

 


Public Finance

Public Finance, 31 January 2019

Aidan Shilson-Thomas, Researcher at Reform, wrote an article in Public Finance about community sentencing. Despite a lack of sentence confidence, evidence suggests that community sentencing has lower re-offending rates, and is cheaper to implement, than short sentencing.

"Increasing sentencer confidence in community sentences must be the first step to building public confidence in their use."

Read the full article here


Reform

Reform think tank media statement: NAO report on NHS financial sustainability

Commenting on the National Audit Office’s annual report on the financial sustainability of the NHS, Andrew Haldenby, Director of the independent public services think tank, Reform, said:

“The NHS has used extra money for day-to-day pressures rather than to change and become more efficient. Ministers hope that their new plan will be different, especially because some money is ringfenced for GPs and cannot be used to finance hospital deficits.”


Reform

Reform statement: Institute for Government Civil Service turnover study

Commenting on today’s study from the Institute for Government, Dr Luke Heselwood, Senior Researcher at Reform think tank and co-author of the report ‘Smarter Working in Public Services: The HMRC experience so far’, said:

“Retention of staff has consistently been a problem facing the civil service. Recent research from Reform shows that the civil service can offer a better work-life balance, enhance productivity and improve retention by doing things such as promoting flexible working.”


The Economist

The Economist, 11 January 2019

Andrew Haldenby, Director of Reform, was interviewed for The Economist to discuss the NHS Long Term Plan. The full article can be found here (£).

But Andrew Haldenby of Reform, a think-tank, says that progress in most existing icss has been slow. Change is rarely brought about by “bureaucratic exhortation”, he notes.


Reform

Reform comment on the final report of Shelter’s commission on the future of social housing

Responding to the final report of Shelter’s commission on the future of social housing, Dr Luke Heselwood, Senior Researcher at Reform think tank, said:

“A lack of social housing has contributed to England’s homelessness crisis. However, homelessness is not just about housing and public services need to work together to tackle its root causes, including mental health problems and family breakdown.”  


Today programme logo

Radio 4, 7 January 2019

Andrew Haldenby, Director of Reform, appeared on BBC Radio 4's 'Today' programme to discuss the NHS Long Term Plan. He argued that the NHS was in a similar place five years ago, with an influx of money and a five-year plan. We are in a similar position today and yet not enough reform has happened in that period.

Nevertheless, the NHS's long-term plan is good and focuses on the right areas such as prevention and moving into primary care. But political leadership needs to be strong to hold NHS authorities to account, and progress made should be extremely clear throughout the process, not just at the end of the ten-year period.

You can listen to the show again here.


Reform

Reform statement: ONS deaths of homeless people in England and Wales

Commenting on statistics published by the ONS today, Reform Researcher, Imogen Farhan, said:

“Public services need to work together to tackle the root causes of what makes a person homeless, including substance abuse and mental health problems. Contrary to Theresa May’s statement yesterday, there is more to tackling homelessness than just building more houses.” 

This statement was covered in the Southend Echo

 


Reform

Reform statement: New UCAS admissions data

Commenting on official statistics from UCAS highlighting that universities are accepting more students with lower grades, Reform Researcher, Dr Luke Heselwood, said:

"Although the number of students with lower grades being accepted by universities is on the rise, these figures focus on the sector as a whole.

Reform research shows that top universities are all but failing to improve access for the most disadvantaged students because, on average, they do not achieve the required A level grades, compared with their more advantaged peers."


HSJ logo

Health Service Journal, 13 December 2018

To accompany the launch of Reform's report 'Making NHS data work for everyone' report author and Reform Director of Research, Eleonora Harwich, wrote an article for the Health Service Journal on the need for a national strategy to harness the value of healthcare data. It is available here.


Financial Times

Financial Times, 11 December 2018

Andrew Haldenby, Reform Director, was quoted in Financial Times in an article on private sector outsourcing. The full article can be found here (£).

Andrew Haldenby, chief executive of Reform, a public services think-tank, supported the government’s decision. “It’s entirely possible for the government to drive the sector completely out of business and that would be a mistake given the benefits of public competition in public services and the innovation that new providers can deliver.”


Sunday Times

The Sunday Times, 9 December 2018

Reform Director, Andrew Haldenby, was quoted in The Sunday Times, discussing GP appointments.

Andrew Haldenby, director of the think tank Reform, argues that patients as well as doctors have to adjust their priorities: “When we phone a GP surgery, we shouldn’t expect to see a GP every time.” He believes more one-stop shops with nurses, physios, dentists, pharmacists and GPs working in concert could halve doctors’ appointments without risk to the patient.

To read the full article, click here.


FE news

FE news, 29 November 2018

To accompany the launch of Reform's report 'Gaining Access: Increasing the participation of disadvantaged students at elite universities', Dr Luke Heselwood wrote an article for FE News titled 'Three Steps to Better Measures: Increasing the participation of disadvantaged students'. Read the full article here.