Current Opportunities

Bright Blue

Bright Blue is an independent liberal conservative think tank based in London. They are  interested in working with historians whose work can speak to these issues:

  • Understanding the scale, causes and consequences of air pollution, and thinking about new policies to reduce it, both nationally and in the West Midlands.
  • Mapping the drivers of and levels of neighbourhood trust across the country, and thinking about ways to bolster it – in education, housing and immigration policy.
  • Understanding the experiences of claimants on Universal Credits, and thinking about new policies to improve the practical experience of claimants.
  • Examining trends in the gas network, and exploring policies to decarbonise in a cost-effective way.
  • Exploring the importance of citizenship and the decline in citizenship rates, and thinking of policies to reverse this trend.
  • Developing a centre-right manifesto for conserving domestic and global nature conservation.
  • Creating a new centre-right policy agenda on international development.



The IPPR is a left-wing think-tank based in London. They are  interested in collaborating with historians on the following project:

IPPR’s Energy, Climate, Housing and Infrastructure team is looking for historians to work on the following over the first six months of 2019:

  • A historical literature review of social / affordable housing policy in the UK. The team are particularly interested in the changing debates on the purpose of social and affordable housing over the 20th century through to modern day. The team are particularly interested in government or other significant reviews on the topic of social housing (e.g. Hills Review 2007) over the course of the 20th century.
  • Alongside this (and more widely), the team are interested in the wider debates in housing policy on ‘affordability’ of housing and what is and isn’t affordable.

IPPR Northare interested in working with historians on the following:

  • a historical overview of how Towns (in the north particularly) have been treated in policy in postwar era.
  • the mass observation movement and its relevance for today. What can we learn, how could it be reinvented for today’s challenges? The value of this type of qualitative data for informing policy makers.

IPPR Progressive Review is interested in working with a historian as a commissioning editor.

  • IPPR’s journal of politics and ideas, publishing thematic issues with contributions from leading academics, researchers and campaigners. The journal is read by an audience of politicians, influencers and researchers interested in progressive politics. The journal aims to bring new policy-relevant academic voices into the public sphere, in an accessible way.
  • The editors are keen to work with a historian to become a commissioning editor in 2019. This would involve commissioning and editing 1-2 pieces per quarterly issue, from historians with knowledge of issues relevant to today’s politics and policy. We are particularly keen to commission diverse writers.

IPPR’s Women and the Economy programme would like to work with a historian on two issues:

  • How has the shape of the welfare state changed with the economic model since the industrial revolution? How has responsibility shifted between the state, civil society and family, and how has this related to employment and wages? What has driven change?
  • How has technological innovation and automation of work affected men and women differently in the past? What lessons can be learned today?


Resolution Foundation

The Resolution Foundation is an independent think-tank based in London that focuses on policies to help the standard of living of low-and-middle-income families. They have highlighted the following projects as areas of potential collaboration:

  • A history of UK productivity slowdowns: when and why did they occur, how did we get out of them, what did politicians and economists at the time say about them, what were the wider social consequences?
  • A history of industrial disruption: looking at past periods of industrial decline and technical change, who were the winners and losers and how did policy respond, especially in the context of the worries about tech displacing jobs today.
  • How working hours and holidays have changed in the long-run.
  • Studies on those times and places where migration has had a big effect on the labour market – in the context of how EU membership has affected the labour market, and how that is likely to change substantially with Brexit.
  • The Resolution Foundation has been working over recent years to bring the living standards of lower-to-middle income families up the political agenda. Why and how were this group a focus of politicians in the past and has that changed?
  • 2019 is the centenary of the Housing and Town Planning Act, which started lots of council house building. How can this Act tell us about how and why social housebuilding was encouraged? What had driven past waves of house building? How have public attitudes towards house building changed?
  • Recent economic histories of particular places such as a mid-sized city.
  • Detailed history of particular taxes or benefits.


Shared Assets

Shared Assets seeks to develop new models of managing land that are sustainable, productive and inclusive of local people. We would like to work with a historian to develop a piece of work to support our research and advocacy work in the following areas:

  • How have patterns of land use and specifically agricultural land use in London and its green belt changed? What’s the relationship between population change, urbanisation and agricultural land use?
  • A history of land use, rights and ownership in commonwealth and ex-colonial countries: how did the imposition of English law affect land use and land-based economies?
  • How have patterns of land use, rights and ownership developed differently in each of the four constituent nations of the UK?
  • How has the funding, management, and prevalence of public parks and green spaces changed and developed over the last century?