Civitas

Civitas: Institute for the Study of Civil Society is a cross-party think tank which strives to benefit public debate through independent research, reasoned argument, and open discussion – standing apart from party politics and transitory intellectual fashions.

Civitas’ output has covered issues ranging from education & skills, to crime and defence as well as answering the fundamental questions on how to improve economic growth, social cohesion and civil society. In recent years, strong focuses of work have been on family and schools, reforms to governance through to trade and industrial policy. Ongoing projects currently include improving small business access to skills and affordable energy, developing new ideas for childcare funding and improving food security.

Uniquely among think tanks, Civitas has always played an active, practical part in rebuilding civil society by running schools on Saturdays and after-school hours so that children who are falling behind at school can achieve their full potential.


Latest reports

Back to basics: what is childcare policy for?

This report from UK think tank Civitas suggests reforms that would re-orient childcare policy towards the objective of supporting parents. Childcare is a larger political priority in the UK than it ever has been before, and the target of unprecedented, and growing, levels of public spending. Despite this, there is little clarity on what the...

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Sovereign Wealth funds: what’s the big idea… and what could it mean for Britain?

This report from UK think tank Civitas sets out a definition and understanding of sovereign wealth funds. Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) are often discussed as government-owned investment funds with their benefits returning to the government and citizens – and which invests its assets according to the interests of the national sovereign sponsor. They play an...

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Universal childcare: is it good for children?

This report from UK think tank Civitas investigates whether universal childcare is good for children. All of the UK’s major political parties have recently declared their intentions to significantly expand state subsidies for childcare outside the home, including for babies from the age of nine months. It’s frequently said that universal “early childhood education” is...

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‘Islamophobia’ revisited

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at how Islamophobia is defined by local authorities. Islamophobia Revisited by Hardeep Singh builds on a previous collection of essays on Islamophobia published by Civitas in August 2019. Hardeep Singh returns to this topic, and in Islamophobia Revisited conducts a thorough investigation into how Islamophobia is defined...

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Breaking the care ceiling

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at how many care leavers go to university. This Civitas report provides new evidence on the number of care leavers who go to university in the UK alongside the first-ever league table of care leavers at UK universities. In 2022 the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care...

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Fixing Human Rights Law

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at what has gone wrong with contemporary human rights legislation. Fixing Human Rights Law by Dr. Michael Arnheim, a practising barrister, Sometime Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge and author of 23 published books to date, provides an overview of what has gone wrong with contemporary human...

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BBC impartiality and the problem of bias

This report from UK think tank Civitas examines bias and impartiality within BBC Bitesize and BBC Teach. Dr. Richard Norrie (former director of the statistics and policy research programme at Civitas) examines bias and impartiality within BBC Bitesize and BBC Teach, the organisation’s educational output aimed at younger audiences. In this Civitas publication, Dr. Norrie...

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Who watches the watches?: A response to Nazir Afzal’s ‘Independent Culture Review of London Fire Brigade’

This report from UK think tank Civitas is a response to Nazir Afzal’s ‘Independent Culture Review of London Fire Brigade’. Dr Richard Norrie (director of the research and statistics programme, Civitas) conducts a forensic analysis of the recent Independent Culture Review of London Fire Brigade. That review was led by the former prosecutor Nazir Afzal,...

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A short route to deindustrialisation?

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at the UK’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) and the regulation of carbon emissions on energy intensive industries. In this analysis, Jim McConalogue (CEO, Civitas) looks at the UK’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) and the regulation of carbon emissions on energy intensive industries. This new publication asks whether...

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Adapting the manufacturing sector for a brighter future

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at new approaches to energy resilience among SMEs. In this latest Civitas publication, Dr Jim McConologue and Aaryaman Banerji look into energy resilience among SME manufacturers in the UK. The importance of SMEs within the manufacturing sector and across the UK economy should not be overlooked. There...

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China’s increasing influence in the Commonwealth of Nations

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at China and a triad of trade, diplomacy, and military relations. The UK has a unique post-Brexit opportunity to re-engage with its Commonwealth partners, forge new and exciting trading relationships – and where it has already done so, to build and capitalise on these with new security...

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Governing the beautiful game: the future of football in civil society

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at the prospect of regulation within English men’s football. This Civitas publication looks at the prospect of regulation within English men’s football, something that has a large impact on football fans and the local community. Aaryaman Banerji is a sports researcher at Civitas looking at how we...

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An analysis of the effects of taxes and benefits on household income

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at the 'net dependency ratio’ and hoe many live in households receiving more in benefits than they pay in tax. This analysis of Office for National Statistics (ONS) data for the impact of tax and benefits on household income shows that a record 54.2 per cent of...

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The radical progressive university guide

This report from UK think tank Civitas sets out to quantify the extent of ‘radical progressive’ policies at British Universities. The Radical Progressive University Guide sets out to quantify the extent of ‘radical progressive’ policies at British Universities, including their curbs on free speech. Dr Richard Norrie (director of the statistics and policy research programme)...

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Family and state in education: What role for parent’s rights?

This report from UK think tank Civitas looks at the issue of parental rights in education from a philosophical perspective. This essay from Anthony O’Hear (professor of philosophy at the University of Buckingham) explores the issue of parental rights in education from a philosophical perspective, starting with the work of Plato and Aristotle before looking...

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