Institute for Government

The Institute for Government is the UK’s leading independent think tank working to make government more effective.

Through in-depth analysis, expert commentary and influential public events, we explore how government works – and how it can work better.

Our team conducts rigorous evidence-based research and data analysis, brings together key decision makers to share insight and expertise, and sets out fresh ideas and constructive recommendations to help senior politicians and public servants improve the way government works.

Our IfG Academy programme provides opportunities for ministers, shadow ministers and senior civil servants to understand their roles, and develop skills to better equip them for life in government.

We also work with academic researchers, charities, businesses and international audiences to help them understand how government and policy making works.

The Institute was awarded the Political Studies Association’s Political Communicator of the Year for 2021-22. In 2019, it was Think Tank of the Year at Prospect’s 2019 Think Tank Awards; and in 2018, it was the winner of the best UK economic think tank award at Prospect’s 2018 Think Tank Awards.

The Institute was founded in 2008 and is led by Dr Hannah White OBE.


Latest reports

Fixing public services: priorities for the new Labour government

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government examines the public services priorities for the new Labour government. This report from the Institute for Government and Nuffield Foundation reveals that the government’s inheritance on public services is extremely precarious. Most services are performing worse now than they were in 2010 or before the...

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The crisis in prisons

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government will look at how to start fixing the problems at the heart of the criminal justice system. Prisons are in a profound state of crisis. The Prison Governors’ Association warned last week that prisons in England and Wales are just days away from running out...

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Clean power by 2030: How could a Labour government achieve its mission for power sector decarbonisation?

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government will examine how Keir Starmer can knock down the 10 biggest barriers to Labour's 2030 clean power plan. If elected a Labour government will face 10 major barriers to hitting its 2030 clean power target – and needs a plan for week one, month one...

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Capital spending in public services: fixing how the government invests in the NHS, schools and prisons

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government reveals the impact of the UK’s historically low – and badly spent – capital budgets. Crumbling buildings, creaking IT and a lack of equipment will continue to seriously hamper public service performance unless the next government takes a new approach to capital spending. This report,...

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Delivering a general practice estate that is fit for purpose

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government says that the next government must urgently modernise old and cramped NHS GP buildings. GPs and the rest of the general practice workforce are working in buildings that are often too cramped, too old and too inflexible for a modern health service – with a...

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General election 2024: the precarious state of the state

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government examines the scale and severity of the problems facing the next government. The general election campaign is in full swing. Politicians are vying to persuade the public that it is their party which is best placed to lead the UK to a brighter future. But...

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Funding local growth in England

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government sets out how the next government can simplify the funding landscape for all local and combined authorities. Central government’s over-reliance on competitive bidding to fund local and combined authorities is not working for anyone and inhibits local growth. This report sets out how the next...

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A preventative approach to public services

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government sets out how the next government can use a new parliament to shift to a preventative approach to public services. Whoever wins the general election will be unable to deliver high-performing public services – and keep taxes and debt at sustainable levels – unless it...

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Who runs Whitehall?

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government highlights the need to improve the way officials are appointed to the most senior roles and managed once in post. This report reveals, for the first time, the backgrounds, appointments, pay and management of 148 of Whitehall’s top civil servants. The IfG’s findings make clear...

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A new deal for England

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government looks at how the next government should complete the job of English devolution. This report calls on the next government to reset the English devolution agenda and puts forward 30 proposals – which can and should be implemented over the next five years – to...

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When to run the next spending review

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government recommends that the next government must hold an urgent spending review before a budget 'cliff edge'. With the UK facing levels of government spending uncertainty not seen in decades, this report warns that whoever wins the general election should launch a one-year spending round within...

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Parliament and regulators: How select committees can better hold regulators to account

This report from UK think tank The Institute for Government looks at how select committees can better hold regulators to account. The UK’s new post-Brexit regulatory responsibilities and powers are not matched by adequate levels of parliamentary scrutiny – with almost a third of UK regulators not scrutinised by parliament since the 2019 general election....

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Adapting to climate change

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government will look at how the UK can better manage a rapidly changing environment. The impact of climate change is beginning to be felt in the UK. Despite this, successive governments have failed to prepare the UK to adapt to these changes. New housing developments are...

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Power with purpose

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government gives seven recommendations for radical reform of the centre of government. Power with purpose sets out why the centre of government has failed successive prime ministers – and why it will continue to do so – and puts forward seven recommendations for radical reform. Whoever...

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Strengthening the UK’s fiscal framework: Putting fiscal rules in their place

This report from UK think tank the Institute for Government provides a guide to reform the fiscal framework to enable the government to make better choices. The UK’s fiscal framework, including a flawed set of rules, is incentivising bad policy decisions shaped by short-termism and fictional spending plans – and does little to promote fiscal...

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