Centre for Policy Studies

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The Centre for Policy Studies is a Thatcherite business lobby group. It describes itself as "the home of the next generation of conservative thinking". Founded in 1974 by Margaret Thatcher's mentor, Sir Keith Joseph, its track record as a think tank includes developing such policies as the raising of the personal allowance, the Enterprise Allowance, the ISA, transferable pensions, and synthetic phonics. The CPS's main legacy is the bulk of the Thatcher reform agenda.ref


The CPS has repeatedly received money from Tobacco companies, and may continue to do so. In 2011, it co-signed a public letter calling on the govt to "call a halt to the relentless campaign to 'denormalise' smoking through an endless barrage of new controls, directives and diktats". ref, p.10

In 2013, the CPS published a report on Fracking whose authors appeared to have substantial conflicts of interest. ref
A 2015 report by the CPS calling renewable energy the “most expensive policy disaster in modern British history” was dismissed by experts as biased and analytically flawed. The CPS did not disclose who funded these outputs, or any of its other work.ref



  • Sept.11.2018: Lobbyists: Brexit’s Biggest Beneficiaries. The Thatcherite business lobby group, the Centre for Policy Studies, has also tasked itself with coming up with "radical policy ideas for post-Brexit Britain". It has pulled in tax haven advocate and Adam Smith Institute director Tom Clougherty to tackle tax reform ref; a property tycoon is the ideas man for the housing crisis; and welfare reform falls to the commercial lobbying firm Public First run by lobbyist James Frayne ref. ... Who attended a Centre for Policy Studies lunch with Business Secretary Greg Clark, however, isn’t known, or at least isn’t publicly known. Clark’s department is refusing to disclose names. Tamsin Cave, Unlock Democracy.
  • Dec.19.2015: Centre for Policy Studies. Founded by Margaret Thatcher and Keith Joseph, the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) promotes the giveaway of vital public services to the private sector. Funded and peopled by some of the most iniquitous vagabonds in the corporate world, CPS relentlessly demands more and more control of basic necessary services to be handed to incompetent exploitative capitalist gangsters. DuckSoap.
  • Dec.04.1998: The wonks are coming of age. Rarely have think-tanks had such an opportunity to influence policy. ... The danger, as Eamonn Butler of the pro-free market Adam Smith Institute sees it, is that the IPPR will go the way of the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS). "It became so close to the govt that it in effect became part of the No.10 Policy Unit and disappeared." Caroline Daniel, New Statesman.


  • Michael Spencer, chairman. Investment analyst at Simon and Coates (1976-1980); futures broker at Drexel Burnham Lambert (1980-2983); director at money broker Charles Fulton (1983-1986); founder of financial derivatives broking firm Intercapital (May.1986–).ref
  • Sir Graham Brady, Conservative Party MP
  • Baron Maurice Saatchi, deputy chairman. Centre for Policy Studies (??-??); Shandwick plc (??-??); Public Affairs director at the Waterfront Partnership (??-1997); MP for Altrincham and Sale West (1997–); Education and Employment Select Committee (1997-2001); Treasury Select Committee (2007-2010); chairman of the 1922 Committee of backbench Conservative MPs (2010-2019); Conservative peer in 2018 for services to the Thatcher govt.ref
  • Baron Anthony Bamford, chairman of JCB, Conservative Party donor.ref Anthony BamfordWikipedia-W.svg
  • Ben Elliot, honorary Treasurer. co-founder of luxury lifestyle group Quintessentially (Dec.2000; Food Surplus and Waste Champion (2018–); Co-chairman of the Conservative Party (Jul.2019–); Trustee for The Eranda Rothschild Foundation; Trustee of the Victoria & Albert Museum; Chair of the Development Board; campaign manager for London Mayoral candidate Zac Goldsmith (2015).ref Known as "Mr Fix-it" to the super-rich.[3]
  • Graham Edwards. co-founded commercial property firm Telereal (2000–).
  • Professor Niall Ferguson, senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University; senior fellow of the Center for European Studies, Harvard; visiting professor at Tsinghua University, Beijing; the Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation Distinguished Scholar at the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, DC; founder and managing director of advisory firm Greenmantle LLC; former adviser to US Republican Mitt Romney. Niall FergusonWikipedia-W.svg
  • Douglas Flint, KPMG (1977–1995); group chairman of HSBC Holdings plc (1995–Sept.2017); UK's envoy to China's Belt and Road initiative.ref
  • Sir Michael Heller, deputy chairman. Chairman of investment company London & Associated Properties plc[1] (1971–); knighted in 2013 for philanthropy; Conservative Party donor.ref Michael Heller (businessman)Wikipedia-W.svg
  • Lord Jonathan Hill of Oareford, Jacob Rothschild (??–??); Conservative Party's Research Department (1985–1986); special adviser to Kenneth Clarke in the Employment, DTI and Health Departments (1986–1989); marketing services company Lowe Bell Communications (1989–1991); Downing Street Policy Unit (1991–1992); Political Secretary to John Major (1992–1994); consultant at Bell Pottinger (1994–1998); founding director of strategic communications consultancy Quiller Consultancy Ltd (1998–2010); govt minister (May.2010–??); appointed to the House of Lords as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Education (May.2010–Jan.2013); Leader of the House of Lords (Jan.2013–Jul.2014); European Commissioner for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union (Jul.2014–Jul.2016).ref
  • Andrew Knight, worked at merchant bankers J Henry Schroder Wagg & Company Ltd (1961–1963); the Investors Chronicle (1962–1966); Washington office of The Economist (Mar.1968–Apr.1970); established the Brussels office of The Economist (1973); editor of The Economist (Oct.1974-1986); chief executive and editor-in-chief of the Daily Telegraph (Jan.1986–Oct.1989); chairman of News International plc (Mar.1990–Jun.1994); director of News Corporation (Jan.1991-1994); non-executive director of News Corporation (1994–2013); board member of J Rothschild Investment Trust (1996–Jul.2008); chairman of J Rothschild Capital Management Ltd (Jul.2008–); chairman of Times Newspapers Holdings Ltd.ref Andrew Knight (journalist)Wikipedia-W.svg
  • Jon Moulton, Conservative Party donor. Joined Coopers & Lybrand (1972–1980); managing director Citicorp Venture Capital (1980–); managing partner of Schroder Ventures Ltd (Permira) (1985–1994); did a spell at Apax Partners (1994–??); founded private equity firm Alchemy Partners (1997–Sept.2009); founder of private equity firm Better Capital (2009–); Chairman of investment bank and broker FinnCap, the major AIM broker and of The International Stock Exchange. Chair of the turnaround firm Better Capital and also of Greensphere, an alternative energy infrastructure fund (which was partnered with the Texas Pacific Group). Active private investor and has been working in private equity since 1979. He was a member of the board of the $4bn UK Government Regional Growth Fund. He is a member of the board of the Corporate Finance Faculty of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and regularly writes, broadcasts and speaks on corporate finance and financial matters. Also an Honorary Fellow of University College London and a trustee of two medical charities. His past career includes spells running Permira, CVC UK and the buy-out group of Apax, as well as being a director of numerous public and private companies including Ashmore plc.

Sources: cps.org.ukArchive-org-sm.svg; go "left" to see the changes over time. Note: the "about" section only appears from Jan.15.2018.

People - Jan.15.2018

Board: Lord Saatchi, Sir Graham Brady, Lord Bamford, Professor Michael Clarke, Ben Elliot, Professor Niall Ferguson, Douglas Flint, Jonathan Goodwin, Sir Michael Heller, Lord Hill of Oareford, Andrew Knight, Jon Moulton, Fraser Nelson, Viscountess Rothermere, Richard Sharp, Lord Strathclyde.Our BoardArchive-org-sm.svg Team: Robert Colvile, Jenny Nicholson, Rosie Lyburn, Daniel Mahoney, Emma Revell, Bryony Thorogood.Our TeamArchive-org-sm.svg


  1. ^ How Has Think Tank Transparency Evolved in 2018? Transparify, Jul.16.2018.
  2. ^ Transparency Comparison Table. Who Funds You?. Accessed Aug.2018.
  3. ^ Ben Elliot: concierge to the super-rich and Zac Goldsmith's secret weapon. Nick Curtis, The Evening Standard, Nov.19.2015.