Policy Network

Policy Network

Policy Network is a London-based centre-left international think tank. It is leading platform for long-term strategic thinking, policymaking and international best practice, influencing policy debates in the UK, Europe and internationally. Its President is former UK First Secretary of State and EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson and its Chair is Roger Liddle, former Special Adviser on European matters to Tony Blair. Olaf Cramme is Director and Patrick Diamond is Senior Research Fellow.



Policy Network aims to develop and promote a modern progressive agenda based on the ideas and experiences of social democratic modernizers. It argues that in order to meet challenges of globalization the centre-left must embark on a process of permanent renewal.

Although primarily concerned with Europe, it works with democratic governments internationally, providing a forum for politicians, policymakers and experts to debate and share ideas for the development of the centre-left agenda.

Current work programmes

Policy Network’s core work programmes are:

  • The politics of climate change
  • The future of the EU
  • Globalization and social justice
  • Immigration and integration
  • International politics and global governance
  • The renewal of social democracy

One of its more prominent research projects in recent years concerned the European Social Model, analysing Europe's various models of the welfare state.

Recent projects have also included economic and public service reform; migration, integration and political trust; the role of trade unions in Europe; and mutualism as the left’s answer to the UK coalition government’s big society rhetoric.

Progressive Governance Network

World leaders attending the Progressive Governance Conference 2009 in Chile.

The Progressive Governance Network, for which Policy Network acts as the secretariat, brings together centre-left heads of state, governments, politicians and intellectuals from across the world to address the challenges of globalization. The network's stated goal is to enhance co-operation and links between key progressive policymakers and academics as well as to provide a meeting place for exchanging concrete policies and practices. It was launched in 1999 by Bill Clinton, Tony Blair, Gerhard Schroder, Wim Kok and Massimo D’Alema.

Conferences and summits have been held in Chile, India, the UK, the United States, South Africa, Germany and Sweden. Recent participants have included Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva; US Vice President Joe Biden; Director-General of the World Trade Organization, Pascal Lamy; Michelle Bachelet, the former President of Chile; former UK prime minister Gordon Brown; and Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.

The next Progressive Governance conference is to be hosted by Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg in Oslo in May 2011.


In partnership with the Alfred-Herrhausen-Society, the international forum of Deutsche Bank, Policy Network runs Foresight, a three year programme of investigation and debate focused on Russia, Latin America, the USA, Europe, India and China, and the challenge these groups of countries face in forging common futures in a multi-polar world.


Policy Network’s website acts as a platform for centre-left debate, with regular contributors including Anthony Giddens, Michael Lind, David Held, John Kay, Andrew Gamble and James K Galbraith.

The website plays host to Policy Network’s Social Democracy Observatory, a forum for ideas and debate from the progressive centre left, which includes ‘The classics of social democracy’, an essay series in which prominent policymakers revisit seminal texts in centre-left thinking. It also publishes a monthly insight report, The State of the Left, which includes insider analyses of the political climate in a number of countries.

In November 2010 Policy Network launched its opinion poll tracker, which tracks the fortunes of Europe’s social democratic parties on a cross-comparative basis.

Board Members

Susan Hitch: Manager of Lord Sainsbury of Turville's pro bono programme, a Governor of the Institute for Government and board member of Centre for Cities, Progress and the Centre for European Reform.

Patrick Diamond: Senior research fellow at Policy Network and former head of long-term policy in the UK Prime Minister's Office, 10 Downing Street. Formerly group director of policy at the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

Matt Browne: Fellow at the Center for American Progress, previously director of public affairs in APCO Worldwide’s London office.

Giles Radice: Labour member of the House of Lords, formerly Labour member of parliament for North Durham 1972-2001.

Loukas Tsoukalis: President of the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP) and special adviser to Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission.

Jürgen Krönig: UK correspondent for German weekly Die Zeit and freelance author for various publications and TV in Germany, Switzerland and the UK.

Tibor Szanyi: Socialist member of the Hungarian parliament and former Political State Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Ministry of Economy and Transport.

Liam Byrne: Labour member of parliament for Birmingham Hodge Hill and shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions.

Recent publications

  • Southern Discomfort Again, Patrick Diamond and Giles Radice, 2010
  • 'Cause for concern? The impact of immigration on political trust', Lauren McLaren, 2010
  • Jobs, industry and opportunity: Growth strategies after the crisis, 2010
  • 'Old player, new role? India in a multi-polar world', Priya Shankar, 2010
  • 'What’s the story? Nation-building narratives in Australian climate politics', David Hetherington and Tim Soutphommasane, 2010
  • 'Migration and the rise of the radical right', Montserrat Guibernau, 2010
  • Beyond New Labour: the future of social democracy in Britain, Patrick Diamond and Roger Liddle (eds.), 2009
  • Building a low-carbon future: the politics of climate change, Anthony Giddens, Simon Latham and Roger Liddle, 2009
  • Social Justice in the Global Age, Olaf Cramme and Patrick Diamond, 2009
  • Shifting Alliances: Europe, America and the future of Britain's global strategy, Patrick Diamond, 2008
  • The European Union in the Global Age, Peter Mandelson, 2007
  • Over To You, Mr Brown, Anthony Giddens, 2007

Partner thinktanks


European Policy Centre

Progressive Policy Institute

Wiardi Beckman Stichting

Foundation for Progressive European Studies

External links

Policy Network

Progressive Governance Network

Social Democracy Observatory


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