Demos is a champion of people, ideas, and democracy. We bring people together. We bridge divides. We listen and we understand. We are practical about the problems we face, but endlessly optimistic and ambitious about our capacity, together, to overcome them.

At a crossroads in Britain’s history, we need ideas for renewal, reconnection and the restoration of hope. Challenges from populism to climate change remain unsolved, and a technological revolution dawns, but the centre of politics has been intellectually paralysed. Demos will change that. We can counter the impossible promises of the political extremes, and challenge despair – by bringing to life an aspirational narrative about the future of Britain that is rooted in the hopes and ambitions of people from across our country.

Three things make Demos unique:

  1. We listen to people, from all walks of life. We use rigorous research methods, including machine learning and big data, to understand social trends as well as people’s lives and experiences. We get people together to discuss problems and develop solutions, whether that’s in focus groups, citizens juries, or online communities.
  2. We’re authentically cross-party. We’re passionate about ideas and innovation and we believe working across party lines is the way to get things done. And we know you don’t have to be in government to make change: so we’ll also work with social and community leaders, businesses and campaigners to renew Britain.
  3. We innovate and look forward. We believe in the power of change to improve lives and we live by that philosophy. We experiment with new ways of doing research and propose bold policy solutions. We’re looking ahead to the challenges and opportunities of the next decade. We don’t see problems, we see the opportunity to come up with new solutions.

Demos was founded in 1993 and is led by Polly Curtis.

Latest reports

Movers and stayers

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at localising power to level up towns. In an ongoing period of political change, it is imperative that addressing regional inequalities stays firmly on the political agenda. The challenge of supporting people to thrive within the towns they come from is not going away. There is an...

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The costs of creation

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at what is a fair and desirable future for monetised online work and volunteering? There is growing awareness that the web comes at a cost, be that from the selling of our personal data, to proliferating paywalls. The wider social costs are becoming clearer too, from the...

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Voting online

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at how would the Online Safety Bill affect harms arising from political discourse? Self-regulation of social media is coming to an end: governments around the world have decided that platforms will need to be held to account for their role contributing to violent attacks, insurrections, and atrocities....

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Safer by design

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at how collaboration can help design safer gambling? Safety in gambling is under enormous scrutiny. It is a discussion taking place against a backdrop of change, with gambling becoming increasingly available to a population spending more and more time in digital spaces. To facilitate this discussion, we...

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Move on upstream

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at crime, prevention and relationships. In 2019 the Home Office announced a national campaign to hire 20,000 new police officers to keep our streets safe. Move on Upstream has reflected on the state of crime and policing in the UK and argues that such a recruitment drive...

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The Good Web Project

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at when thinking about the future of the web, what does good look like?  For the past eighteen months, CASM at Demos have been asking one question: when thinking about the future of the web, what does good look like? We often struggle to articulate what a...

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Myths and misinformation

This report from UK think tank Demos maps out the barriers to smoking cessation and the uptake of nicotine alternatives. In 2019 the government announced its ambition to make England smoke-free by 2030. Nicotine alternatives, such as e-cigarettes, have an important role to play in aiding smoking cessation. With that in focus, Demos has released...

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Working together

This report from UK think tank Demos looks at the case for universal employment support. Following the pandemic, the UK’s labour market is in an unusual position, simultaneously experiencing low unemployment and a record 1.28 million vacancies in the first three months of 2022. Our research shows that the current system of employment support, skills...

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