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Hello! In 1942 William Beveridge published the report that shaped Britain’s welfare state. We’re asking what lessons it offers us nearly 80 years on. Journalist Nicholas Timmins talks us through the history of the original report then LSE’s Tania Burchardt explains how to fix the holes in our welfare safety net today. And for World Book Day we’re c…
 
Bonus episode here! It’s our full conversation with Marc Stears about his new book, ‘Out of Ordinary’. We chat about the 1945 government, the dilemmas of big change and how politics can reflect our everyday lives. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
 
Hello! What happens when an economy rewards owning things rather than doing things? Author Brett Christophers argues it’s a recipe for soaring inequality and economic stagnation. We chat to Brett about Britain’s “rentier economy” and what to do about it. Then Pascale Robinson from We Own It explains how the problems play out in public sector outsou…
 
Hello! What happened to the UK’s thriving tradition of adult education? How can we rebuild it for the 21st century? Union learning rep Sue Mann tells us about her experience and the importance of having opportunities to learn throughout life. Then friend of the pod Melissa Benn and adult education guru Sir Alan Tuckett talk us through their vision …
 
Hello! We're talking about a BIG idea that's transforming how towns, cities and even schools are run across the world. It's called participatory budgeting (PB) and involves letting citizens decide how public money is spent. We ask Shari Davis what happened when Boston gave young people control of a $1 million budget. Brazilian political scientist R…
 
In partnership with Oatly, Geoff and guest co-host Matt Forde dig into how what we eat and drink impacts the environment. Toni Vernelli from Veganuary sets out the link between our diet and the climate crisis, nursery owner Claire Taylor tells the story of what happened when she transformed her business to plant-based, and social psychologist Melan…
 
Hello! We lead the world on offshore wind power, but not on offshore wind jobs. How can we make sure the green transition delivers good quality work in the UK? Union organiser Hazel Nolan explains the risks of getting things wrong. Thomas Sylvest from Danish Shipping tells us about Denmark’s thriving offshore wind sector. And Chaitanya Kumar from t…
 
Hello! ‘Blue Zones’ are parts of the world where people live much longer and healthier than average. What’s their secret? We ask journalist Dan Buettner, who came up with the idea after researching longevity hotspots across the globe. Thea Parikos tells us about life in one of the original Blue Zones: the Greek island of Ikaria. And Mayor Betsy Pri…
 
Hello! With President Trump now banned from many of the world’s largest tech platforms, we’re exploring who should decide what is acceptable online speech. Do tech CEOs have too much power over the public conversation? Yaël Eisenstat explains how her time working at Facebook left her convinced that we need more accountability of Big Tech. Then Prof…
 
Hello! In the last year we've seen huge, unplanned changes in how lots of people go about their jobs. We’re asking what it means for the future of flexible working. Jane Van Zyl from Working Families talks about how to give people more control over where, when and how much they work. Karen Mattison from Timewise explains why it makes sense for empl…
 
Happy New Year! This week we're talking to green energy supremo and founder of Ecotricity, Dale Vince. Dale chats about his extraordinary journey from a single wind turbine in Stroud to building the world’s first vegan football club. AND his next venture: producing diamonds from carbon the sky. BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND: Dale Vince on green energy, vegan…
 
Hello! It’s the end of December, which can only mean one thing: time to unveil our favourite episodes of the year. We’ve listened back, tallied up the scores and meticulously whittled it down to the top 10. What’s made it to the coveted Number 1 spot? All will be revealed... See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
Hello! We've got the mince pies out and put our Christmas jumpers on for our first ever AMA (Ask Me Anything). We answer your questions on everything from Christmas dinner to how we first met. And Geoff finally reveals the leisure centre story... See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
Hello! We’re asking the big questions about where power lies in Britain. Why is government so centralised? Why are we so regionally unequal? Are the two linked? Local government guru Tony Travers talks us through the history. Then Sarah Longlands from IPPR North and Neil McInroy from the Centre for Local Economic Strategies chat about where we go f…
 
Hello! This week we’re talking about rethinking the role of the state. How can we shift power to both frontline workers and citizens? Sue Goss explains why we should ditch the machine metaphors and think about government as a gardener. East Ayrshire Council’s Katie Kelly talks about how they’ve reimagined their relationship with local residents. An…
 
Hello! We all love a good story. This week we’re talking about ‘framing’ - how the stories and metaphors we use shape how people understand politics, the economy and our society. Framing experts Dora Meade and Nicky Hawkins discuss what it’s all about and what progressives can learn. Then California-based Ian Haney Lopez explains how the ‘Race Clas…
 
Hello! A growing movement of businesses argues we need to rethink their role in society. At the forefront of this are BCorps - a new type of business putting purpose alongside profit. We chat to Paul Lindley, founder of Ella’s Kitchen, about why they became a BCorp and what he’s calling for next. Then academic Lenore Palladino explains how we could…
 
Hello! We hear a lot about political polarisation, but is it actually worse than the past? And what can we do about it? Journalist Monica Guzman talks about bridging divides in her own family and her work with Braver Angels in the US. Tim Dixon from More in Common explains fascinating research showing Britain isn’t as divided as we think. And forme…
 
Hello! Biden’s victory is a huge moment for climate politics. But with just 12 months until COP26 in Glasgow next year, we’re asking how to ensure the vital climate summit is a success. We chat to architect of the Paris Agreement Christiana Figueres about what’s at stake next year. WWF’s Katie White talks about the role of the climate movement. Jou…
 
Hello! We hear a lot about the problems of the data economy. How can we take back control? Philosopher Carissa Veliz explains why governments need to step in to protect our privacy. Then Jack Hardinges from the Open Data Institute talks about exciting new ideas to help steward data for the common good. AND broadcasting royalty David Dimbleby is her…
 
Hello! This year’s Black Lives Matter protests are thought to be the biggest in US history and across the world mass movements are on the rise. But how do these movements shift the national conversation? What works in driving political change? We chat to social movement experts Deva Woodly and Hahrie Han about language, organising and the strategie…
 
Hello! Music streaming has made it easier than ever to listen to our favourite artists, but too many musicians earn next to nothing from it. We chat to Naomi Pohl from the Musicians’ Union and Tom Gray from the Broken Record campaign about fixing problems with the industry. But first, violinist Tasmin Little talks about why musicians need more supp…
 
Hello! This week we have two VERY inspiring conversations about US politics. Congresswoman Ilhan Omar - one of the ‘squad’ of young progressive Democrats - talks about her life, her politics and how she approaches the crises facing America today. Then young activist Will Lawrence explains how the Sunrise Movement are shifting the conversation on cl…
 
Hello! What’s the future of workplace organising? This week’s guests are full of ideas. Alex Marshall talks about organising couriers in the gig economy. Michelle Miller explains how Coworker is providing a platform for workers in the US. And New Zealand union supremo Richard Wagstaff talks us through their plan to rebalance power in low paid secto…
 
Hello! We often hear about the idea of meritocracy. But philosopher Michael Sandel thinks it isn’t such a good thing. His new book ’The Tyranny of Merit’ argues the rhetoric of meritocracy is fuelling polarisation and the rise of far right populism. We have a really thought-provoking chat with Michael about his argument and what it means for our at…
 
Hello! How can we ensure essential workers are at the heart of policymaking? Here’s an idea that could change our way of doing things: it’s called the everyday or foundational economy. Care assistant Chika and GMB social care lead Kelly tell us what recent months have been like for those on the frontline. Prof Karel Williams explains what the 'foun…
 
Hello! What if everyone was given a bit of wealth as they hit adulthood? That’s the idea behind Child Trust Funds - established back in the 2000s and coming to fruition for the first cohort of 18 year olds this month. Godfather of Child Trust Funds Gavin Kelly explains the story behind them and why we should resurrect something similar today. We as…
 
Hello! We're back with a bang from our summer hols. Former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard joins us from down under to chat about women in politics. She's co-written a fab new book looking at the experiences of women politicians from Jacinda Ardern to Theresa May. We speak about what they’ve found and how we can tackle barriers to equal rep…
 
Hello! In our latest extended chat we’re speaking to Alastair Campbell about his new book ‘Living Better’. Alastair talks about his experience of depression, the impact it has had on his life and work, and how he has learned to survive with it. In the UK and Ireland, Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org. International h…
 
Hello! Another summer conversation for you. It’s our extended chat with poet and writer Lemn Sissay about 'My Name is Why' - his powerful memoir about growing up in the care system. Lemn talks about his 30 year battle to access his records and why it was so important to write about his story. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out informatio…
 
Hello! Here’s the second of our summer conversations. We speak to former tech insider turned critic Wendy Liu about her new book, Abolish Silicon Valley. Wendy chats about failing in love with tech as a teenager, her experience in the industry and the complex problems of Big Tech. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
Hello! We’re doing something a bit different over the next few weeks and giving you extended conversations with some fab guests. This week: comedian and writer Sara Pascoe on her book Sex, Power, Money. Sara chats about the complexity around issues like sex work and porn, how her mind has changed, and why it’s so important to listen to people’s own…
 
Hello! We’ve done it! Reasons to be Cheerful has hit the big the 1-5-0. Reunited at a safe distance in Ed’s garden, we thought it was time for a bit of self-indulgence… We chat about what we’ve learned, pick out the memorable moments, and explore some themes that have come up again and again since that first episode nearly three years ago. PLUS a c…
 
Hello! In the last few months towns and cities around the world have experimented with closing roads, expanding pavements and pop-up cycle lanes. Does this offer a vision of a better way of using space on our streets? Greater Manchester walking and cycling supremo Chris Boardman talks us through what’s happened in the region and their plans for the…
 
Hello! It’s a story that brings together Mark Zuckerberg, Nick Clegg and the biggest civil rights groups in the US... This week we’re talking about the incredible success of the Stop Hate for Profit Facebook ad boycott. Jessica González, one of the leading figures in the campaign, explains how they’ve persuaded 1,000 advertisers to boycott Facebook…
 
Hello! In recent months, many working parents have had to juggle looking after kids at home with their usual jobs. Research shows this has had a disproportionate impact on working mothers. We talk to researcher Christine Berry and Lucie Stephens from the New Economics Foundation about our reliance on childcare, the crisis now facing the sector, and…
 
Hello! Even before lockdown began, millions of people in the UK regularly struggled to afford to eat and the current crisis has only made this worse. This week we're talking about Britain’s hunger problem. Food bank manager Jon Taylor explains the huge rise in food poverty that he’s seen. Kath Dalmeny from Sustain talks solutions, including the cas…
 
Hello! With 70% British theatres on the brink of collapse and hundreds of thousands of arts jobs at risk, we’re talking about the need to save our arts and culture sector. Playwright James Graham sets out the threat to theatres and what government needs to do. Our FDR expert David Woolner is back to explain the huge art programmes in the New Deal. …
 
Hello! The recent Black Lives Matter protests have led to renewed calls to rethink our understanding of British history. We’re talking about how to address the widespread lack of knowledge of black British history, as well as how the legacies of slavery and Empire shape racism today. Lavinya Stennett talks about how the Black Curriculum is trying t…
 
Hello! How can we support workers in high carbon sectors as we transition to a net zero economy? Phil Asquith tells us about the legendary Lucas Plan in the 1970s, when Phil and his colleagues came up with alternative ideas for production when their jobs were at risk. Spanish Deputy Prime Minister Teresa Ribera explains how their approach to the 'j…
 
After George Floyd's murder, Black Lives Matter protests are again taking place around the world against police violence and systemic racism. We're asking what we can all do to make this a moment of real change. Barrister and former Deputy Mayor of London Matthew Ryder talks about the actions we can take on the specific issue of how black people ar…
 
Bonus episode here! It’s a longer conversation with former Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow. We chat to John about life as Speaker, the evolution of his politics & what he’s planning to do next. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
 
Hello! Over the last few months, we’ve been more reliant on the internet than ever to work, stay in touch with each other, and educate our kids. What impact will this have on the society we build coming out of the crisis? Anett Numa explains why Estonia was better prepared than most countries for living life online. Helen Milner from the Good Thing…
 
Hello! More than a million young people could be unemployed in the wake of the current crisis. How can we create opportunities for young people to find work and contribute to tackling the climate crisis? Historian David Woolner talks through lessons from the Civilian Conservation Corps - established in the US in response to the Great Depression. Yo…
 
Hello! This weekend was the final meeting of the UK’s Climate Assembly. As BIG fans of citizens’ assemblies, we explore how it went and what comes next. Assembly member Ibrahim talks about his experience. Climate expert Becky Willis explains how we can revolutionise democracy to tackle the climate crisis. And Shared Futures' Pete Bryant argues for …
 
Hello! What would society look like if we started from the assumption that people are fundamentally decent? We speak to historian Rutger Bregman about ‘Humankind’ - his new book arguing for a positive view of human nature. Then we talk to COVID mutual aid volunteer Sam Maher about how our instinct in crises is often to help others. And to construct…
 
Hello! Thousands of rough sleepers have been given a place to stay during the lockdown. If we can do it in a pandemic, why not the rest of the time? We talk to Matt Downie from Crisis and Maggie Brunjes from Homeless Network Scotland about how we can build on the last few weeks to end rough sleeping for good. Then Danny Dorling discusses what this …
 
Hello! Some sectors are likely to need further support during this crisis. But should government attach conditions to corporate bailouts, or even seek an equity stake in bailed out companies? Danish MP Rune Lund explains why everyone’s talking about Denmark’s approach. Then Common Wealth’s Adrienne Buller and economist Mariana Mazzucato discuss the…
 
Hello! What determines whether crises lead to major social change? We talk to two historians about lessons from the past. Walter Scheidel explains his argument that economic inequality has only ever been significantly reduced by catastrophes and war. Then Theda Skocpol discusses the impact that ideas and social movements can have. Plus ParkRun foun…
 
Hello! We’re talking about the potential for a green stimulus to help power the economic recovery from coronavirus. Economist Michael Jacobs makes the case about why investment in green projects can boost the economy and drive the transition to net zero. Hannah Martin explains what Green New Deal UK are calling for as we emerge from the crisis. And…
 
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