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.

 

BBC Radio 4

BBC Radio 4 Profile, 18 February 2017

Andrew Haldenby appeared on the Radio 4 programme which presented a short biography of Liz Truss MP, Reform’s former deputy director. The full interview is available here.


BBC News

BBC News Online, 17 February 2017

In a report on the possibility of extending NHS charging, Nick Triggle referred to Reform’s 2013 paper, The cost of our health: charging in healthcare.  

Read the full article here.


GP Online

GP Online, 16 February 2017

GP Online wrote an article on the findings of Reform's report, Saving STPs. Achieving meaningful health and social care reform. "Report co-author Kate Laycock said: ‘As recent weeks have shown, the NHS desperately needs ideas that reshape local services and ease the burden on over-pressed hospitals. STPs can do it but only if ministers give them full control of local health and social care, under one directly elected individual. Without that, the high hopes for STPs will be disappointed.’  

Read the full report here.


Prospect

Prospect, 16 February 2017

Elaine Fischer, Research Assistant at Reform, wrote an article for Prospect following the publication of Reform's report, Saving STPs. Achieving meaningful health and social care reform. In a recent interview when responding to questions around pressure the NHS is facing, Jeremy Hunt said the healthcare service would radically improve due to the government's NHS plan, which are the Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs).

However, STPs are not on track to deliver the wide scale reforms needed. Separate funding streams for healthcare, social care and public health, it is difficult to move money around the system to where it will have the most impact. Some areas show these problems can be overcome, such as Greater Manchester. Without formal organisation, STPs "run the risk of being little more than talking shops".

"STPs are the right idea and they can move the NHS forward. Ministers however must give them the powers, and the financial muscle, needed for them to deliver. The government’s whole health reform agenda depends on it."  

Read the full article here.


The Times AH article

The Times, 16 February 2017

Andrew Haldenby, Director of Reform, wrote an article in The Times following the launch of Reform's report, Saving STPs. Achieving meaningful health and social care reform. Recent hospital problems have shown that NHS reform is needed. However throwing more money at the problem won't solve it. The true solution is the government's plan, however, it won't succeed in its current form. Ministers need to give STPs more power and local commitment, including full control of the NHS and social care budget in their area. They should also decide the health outcomes for their area which every provider will be tasked to deliver. In the medium-term, a locally elected STP leader should take responsibility for the budget. These changes "would give democratic legitimacy to the radical changes that STPs should be proposing. It would also give the government the NHS reform drive it needs."  

Read the full article here.


National Health Executive

National Health Executive, 16 February 2017

National Health Executive wrote an article following the publication of Reform's report, Saving STPs. Achieving meaningful health and social care reform,  outlining key challenges identified by the report. "Researcher at Reform Kate Laycock said: “STPs are trying to integrate health and social care so the systems are much more streamlined and easy to navigate – this is the right thing to be doing. “But having spoken to people we discovered that STPs weren’t going to deliver on this and that’s why we’ve written the paper.”  

Read the full article here.


Conservative Home

Conservative Home, 16 February 2017

Kate Laycock, Researcher at Reform, wrote an article in Conservative Home following the launch of Reform's report, Saving STPs. Achieving meaningful health and social care reform. The idea of Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) is a good one, aiming to tackle issues including the division between health and social care, within the NHS itself and to overcome a “fortress mentality” in the NHS. However, the plan is not going to deliver in its current form.

The involvement of local authorities has been minimal and the plans will need the support of local NHS staff and voters, many of whom weren't aware of the process or consulted. Perhaps most importantly, STPs cannot solve the underlying reasons for the NHS's current problems such as the perverse funding arrangements. Instead, Ministers will need to have strength in their convictions to make STPs work. This would involve giving STPs control of the NHS and social care budgets; setting up desired health outcomes for their populations and hold providers to account; creating a directly elected individual responsible for the NHS budget such as a new Health Care Comissioner or a metro mayor; and clarifying existing legislation on competition.

"Ministers may object that these far-reaching recommendations amount to the kind of “structural reorganisation” which went wrong under the Coalition Government.  What STPs have revealed, however, is that true NHS reform cannot be delivered by well-intentioned conversations alone. The devolution of health and social care to Manchester, also achieved under the Coalition, shows that the right kind of changes can be made without upheaval or even controversy."  

Read the full article here.


Public Finance

Public Finance, 13 February 2017

Alexander Hitchcock, Senior Researcher at Reform, wrote an article for Public Finance following the announcement of the Government's Transformation Strategy. Watch Ben Gummer MP announce it at our Annual conference here. Ben Gummer has outlined a dramatic vision of change through the Government Transformation Strategy. This will require a "disruption of current working practices, better use of data to design services that meet the current and future needs of citizens, not Whitehall silos." This means that leadership roles, working patterns and culture are all due an upgrade, and this transformative business model must become part of "the DNA of public servants".  

Read the full article here.


Schools Week

Schools Week, 11 February 2017

Louis Coiffait, Head of Education at Reform, wrote an article in Schools Week following the publication of Work in progress. Towards a leaner, smarter workforce. He argued that getting people with the right skills and behaviours into the right roles in the schools workforce, the second largest in the public sector, is central to the success of students and the satisfaction of staff. Embracing new technologies can offer an opportunities to increase the productivity of all staff. The future role of the gig economy platforms, particularly for employing supply teachers or exam invigilators, could be huge.

"Some of these changes can be challenging, but this isn’t about robot-teachers – it’s about making sure all public-sector workers, especially in education, are empowered to use the latest tools and thinking."  

Read the full article here.


Charlotte Pickles Newsnight 2

Newsnight, 10 February 2017

Charlotte Pickles, Deputy Director and Head of Research at Reform, appeared on Newsnight to discuss the legacy of Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, outgoing commissioner for the Metropolitan Police.  

Watch the full programme here.


The Guardian

The Guardian Public Leaders' Network, 9 February 2017

Eleonora Harwich wrote an article in The Guardian Public Leaders Network following the publication of Reform's report, Work in progress. Towards a leaner, smarter public-sector workforce. Governments around the world have recognised the potential of AI, Japan and Singapore being particular examples. The UK is well-placed to harness AI through its universities and private sector, but the government’s AI strategy is less clear.

"The UK is well placed to make the most of this ever evolving technology – but success requires a comprehensive strategy and an open conversation with the public."  

Read the full article here.


Ben Gummer

Reform Annual conference: media coverage

In February 2017, Reform held its Annual Conference where the Rt Hon Ben Gummer MP, Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, delivered the keynote speech. During the event, he launched the Government Transformation Strategy.  Media coverage from the event is here.

Computer Weekly "Announcing the strategy at a conference organised by the Reform think tank, Gummer said 2016’s Brexit vote showed “the interface between government and the people has become increasingly fraught”." Read the full article here.

Digital by default news "Delivering the keynote speech at the Reform think tank’s annual conference in central London, Ben Gummer MP, Minister for the Cabinet Office, outlined the government’s commitment to build on the Digital by Default services developed under the previous digital transformation strategy." Read the full article here.


TES

TES, 7 February 2017

Emilie Sundorph, Researcher at Reform, wrote an article for TES following the launch of Work in progress. Towards a smarter, learner public-sector workforce. Education reform is at the heart of the prime minister’s social mobility agenda. Great teaching will play a crucial role in this, helping students overcome their challenges. However, before graduate programmes like Teach First are expanded, it is vital to identify which components of Teach First offer best value for money, as well as other, more affordable, ways of training teachers. The UK should also be careful of creating narrow, graduate-only paths to employment. Apprenticeships may offer an important alternative route into teaching.

"Given the complexity of the challenges that most schools face – a battle to both overcome the attainment gap and to recruit the teachers that will help them do so, all within restrained budgets – they should thoughtfully embrace the opportunities that apprentices will bring with them."  

Read the full article here.


Policing Insight

Policing Insight, 7 February 2017

Alexander Hitchcock, Senior Researcher, and Emilie Sundorph, Researcher, at Reform co-authored an article for Policing Insight following the launch of Work in progress. Towards a leaner, smarter workforce. The frontline of policing is changing. In 2016 there were 5.2 million examples of fraud and computer misuse and almost as many as the 6.2 million traditional crimes. There is potential for technology to help frontline staff, such as facial recognition and building on predictive policing programmes. It is crucial therefore to get the right people into policing. Diversity will be an important element of this, and apprenticeships is an opportunity to widen the intake.

"A new mentality of openness, innovation and diversity should embody the future of policing. If this is achieved it will be positive and disruptive"  

Read the full article here.


Work in progress report cover

Reform report coverage: 'Work in progress'

Reform launched a report on Work in progress. Towards a leaner, smarter public-sector workforce on how the public-sector workforce can be brought up-to-date and modern. A variety of media outlets covered the report, highlighting how technology and automation can streamline the public service, both at Whitehall but also on the frontline of public services. The impact of the gig economy is also explored. Coverage can be found in the following outlets: The Guardian The Times The Sun The Telegraph Civil Service World City AM  The Independent Sky News Mail Online ITV News The Express The Mirror Public Finance International Business Times ITProPortal Computer Business Review Business Insider UK The Yorkshire Post Schools Week The Stack London Loves Business Tech City News Digital By Default News Tech Radar Gizmodo Local Gov People Management Politics Home Government Computing Wired