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Conservative Party Conference 2021

Sunday 3rd October 2021 – Wednesday 6th October 2021

     

    The Centre for Policy Studies is delighted to be back in person in Manchester for this year’s Conservative Party Conference. We look forward to you joining us for our exciting programme of events in our dedicated space at the heart of the secure zone.

     

    Alongside a host distinguished speakers, our guests will include: 

     

    • The Rt Hon Liz Truss MP, Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs
    • The Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, and Minister for Intergovernmental Relations
    • The Rt Hon Lord Frost CMG, Minister of State, Cabinet Office
    • The Rt Hon the Lord Benyon PC, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, DEFRA
    • The Rt Hon Thérèse Coffey MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
    • John Glen MP, Economic Secretary and Minister of State at the Treasury
    • The Hon George Brandis QC, High Commissioner for Australia to the UK
    • Lord Callanan, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
    • Dr Frank Luntz, Pollster and Visiting Academic Fellow, Centre for Policy Studies

     

    All of our events will be hosted in our dedicated space in the Gallery in the secure zone of Manchester Central and streamed online.

     

    You can view and download our public agenda here. There may be changes to the published schedule so please make sure to check the CPS website and @CPSThinkTank on Twitter during the conference for event updates!






    Sunday 3rd October

     

    Taking stock: what does conservatism mean in 2021?

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: Lord Spencer, Chairman, Centre for Policy Studies; Sir Graham Brady, Chairman, 1922 Committee; Dr Frank Luntz, Pollster; Kate Andrews, Economics Editor, The Spectator

    14.00 - 15.00 

     

    The past decade has witnessed huge political and economic changes domestically, and internationally. It has also seen a transformation in the policies and priorities of the Conservative Party - and of its electoral base. So what does it mean to be a conservative today, and what should the Government be doing to fulfil that vision?

     

    CapX Live: What does levelling up mean?

    Moderator: Alys Denby, Deputy Editor, CapX

    Speakers: Alex Stafford MP; Bim Afolami MP; Gareth Davies MP; Dehenna Davison MP; Virginia Crosbie MP

    15.30 - 16.30 

     

    Boris Johnson vowed that his government would 'level up', helping regions which have been left behind to catch up and ensure equal opportunities across the country. But beyond the slogan, what does it really mean? CapX has assembled some of the brightest voices on the Conservative benches to share their views and priorities.

     

    Do the Conservatives have an agenda for welfare?

    Moderator: James Heywood, Head of Welfare, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: The Rt Hon Thérèse Coffey MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions; Gavin Rice, Head of the Work and Welfare Policy Unit, Centre for Social Justice; James Kirkup, Director, Social Market Foundation

    17.00 - 18.00

     

    These last 18 months have seen welfare policy move to the forefront of the debate, with the implementation of unprecedented measures to support workers and businesses. Now, looking beyond the pandemic and its impact, this panel will explore what the Government can do to improve the welfare system, and boost public support for it.  

     

    Centre for Policy Studies Union Reception (Invitation only)


    Speakers: The Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, and Minister for Intergovernmental Relations; Lord Michael Spencer, Chairman, Centre for Policy Studies' Board

    19.00 - 21.00 

    The Centre for Policy Studies is this year delighted to dedicate its annual conference reception to celebrating the United Kingdom.  

     

     

     

    Monday 4th October

     

    Financial Services of the Future: digital, sustainable, open? (Invitation only)

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: John Glen MP, Economic Secretary and Minister of State at the Treasury; Catherine McGuinness, Chair of Policy and Resources Committee, City of London Corporation

    08.00 - 09.00 

    In association with the City of London Corporation

      

    In July the Chancellor outlined a vision for the financial services sector in his Mansion House speech. This event will discuss this vision and how we can achieve it, and guarantee a bright future for the financial services sector, with a particular focus on sustainable finance, digital, and openness.



    How can SMEs address the housing shortage?

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers:  Eddie Hughes MP, Minister for Rough Sleeping & Housing; Rob Boughton, CEO, Thakeham Group; Alex Morton, Head of Policy, Centre for Policy Studies; Alys Denby, Deputy Editor, CapX 

    11.00 - 12.00

    In association with Thakeham

     

    If we are to boost home ownership rates, then increasing the supply of homes is critical. More SME housebuilders would help deliver more homes and ultimately make the goal of home ownership more achievable to millions - but how can this be achieved? 

     

    CapX Live with Dr Frank Luntz and Prof. Matthew Goodwin

    Moderator: John Ashmore, Editor, CapX

    Speakers: Dr Frank Luntz, Pollster and Visiting Academic Fellow, Centre for Policy Studies; Professor Matthew Goodwin, Director of the Centre for UK Prosperity, Legatum Institute

    12.30 - 13.30

    Dr Frank Luntz discusses the findings of his landmark survey on British public and political attitudes with another leading political expert, Prof Matthew Goodwin, dissecting what the British people really think about politics, economics and culture and how those on the centre-right need to respond to survive.



    Clean, green and free - how trade can help the planet 

    Moderator: Eamonn Ives, Head of Energy and Environment Policy, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: The Hon George Brandis QC, High Commissioner for Australia to the UK; Gerald Mason, Senior Vice President, Tate & Lyle Sugars; Sascha O’Sullivan, Comment & Features Editor, City A.M

    14.00 - 15.00 

    In association with Tate and Lyle Sugars

     

    The Government wants to increase trade, and reach Net Zero, and seeks to be a world leader in both - but are these goals compatible? What effect does increased trade have on the environment, and how can reducing barriers to trade increase sustainability?

     

    Getting to Net Zero: how can we decarbonise in time?

    Moderator: Eamonn Ives, Head of Energy and Environment Policy, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: The Rt Hon Dame Andrea Leadsom MP; Ben Houchen, Tees Valley Mayor; Dr Frank Luntz, Pollster and Visiting Academic Fellow, Centre for Policy Studies; Frank Carson, Director of UK Public Policy, Aviva; Caroline Wheeler, Deputy Political Editor, The Sunday Times

    15.30 - 16.30

    In association with Aviva

     

    Launching a major series that the CPS is hosting with Aviva to examine how we can get to Net Zero and the role of a range of important economic sectors in this. We will debate the big questions around Net Zero: how can public support be maintained, what role will key sectors such as finance play, and how can we do it in time?

     

    Bridging the digital divide

    Moderator: Nick King, Research Fellow, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: Matt Warman MP, Former Minister for Digital Infrastructure; The Rt Hon Patricia Hewitt, Chair of Speed Up Britain & Former Secretary of State for Trade and Industry; Matthew Fell, Chief UK Policy Director, CBI; Cllr Kelham Cooke, member of the LGA’s Environment, Economy, Housing and Transport Board and leader of South Kesteven Council

    17.00 - 18.00

    In association with Speed Up Britain

     

    If we are to boost economic growth and seize the potential of digital technology, we need to ensure that every household and business can access the connectivity they need to fully participate in the digital economy. How can we do this quickly and effectively, and what are the benefits of getting it right?

     

    The CPS in conversation with the Rt Hon Liz Truss MP

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director - CPS

    Speaker: The Rt Hon Liz Truss MP, Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs

    18.30 - 19.30 

     

    CPS Director Robert Colvile interviews The Rt Hon Liz Truss MP, Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, in front of a live audience.






    Tuesday 5th October

     

    Bringing Net Zero home: overcoming barriers to energy efficient homes (Invitation only)

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: Lord Callanan, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy; The Rt Hon Greg Hands MP, Minister of State for Business, Energy and Clean Growth of the United Kingdom (invited)

    09.30 - 10.30

    In association with Lloyds Banking Group

     

    What are the main barriers, and what solutions do we have, to launching a retrofitting campaign on the scale required for the UK to meet its Net Zero targets? How can the government and industry work in partnership to improve the energy efficiency of the UK’s housing stock, and meet the 2050 target in a way that is affordable for homeowners?

     

     

    Ready, tech, go! How technology can help SMEs, and the economy, recovery

    Moderator: Eamonn Ives, Head of Energy and Environment Policy, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: Paul Scully MP, Minister for Small Business; Richard Earley, UK Public Policy Manager, Facebook; Sam Dumitriu, Research Director, The Entrepreneurs Network; Michelle Ovens CBE, Founder, Small Business Britain 

    11.00 - 12.00

    In association with Facebook

     

    SMEs are going to be an integral part of the economic recovery, but what can we do to ensure that they are able to bounce back, and what role does technology have to play in this? CPS work in 2020 highlighted the importance to SMEs of tech and digital platforms during the pandemic, now how can we harness that for the recovery?



    Time to turn the taps off? Tax, spending and the inflation threat

    Moderator: Tom Clougherty, Head of Tax, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: The Rt Hon Jesse Norman MP, former Financial Secretary to the Treasury; James Heywood, Head of Welfare, Centre for Policy Studies

    12.30 - 13.30

     

    One of the very first tasks of the Chancellor was to ensure everyone’s safety and welfare in this pandemic. Unfortunately, these actions came with a hefty price tag. As life returns to normal, what is the shape of tax and spending now and in the years to come? And how worried should we be about the looming spectre of inflation?

     

    Catch up to level up: education after the pandemic

    Moderator: Emily Duncan, Chief Operating Officer, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: Richard Holden MP; Claire Coutinho MP; Russell Hobby, CEO, Teach First; Rachel Wolf, Founding Partner, Public First; Nathan D’Laryea, Assistant Headteacher, Loreto High School

    14.00 - 15.00 

    In association with TeachFirst

     

    What can we do to get education, and with it the country, back on track, and why is there a need for urgency? How important is education to levelling up? This event will discuss the key challenges, and why we should all care - not just those with children.



    Taken for Granted? Rural areas and the Conservative agenda

    Moderator: Emily Duncan, Chief Operating Officer, Centre for Policy Studies

    Speakers: The Rt Hon Lord Benyon PC, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, DEFRA; Neil Parish MP; Mark Bridgeman, President, CLA; Lucy Fisher, Deputy Political Editor, The Telegraph

    15.30 - 16.30 

    In association with the CLA

    Boosting prosperity and opportunity across the nation is a key for this government, elected on votes from outside major metropolitan areas. Reducing the productivity gap between rural areas and our towns and cities is key to this agenda and requires serious thought and action across a range of policies. But are these areas taken for granted?



    The CPS in conversation with The Rt Hon Lord Frost CMG

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director - Centre for Policy Studies

    Speaker: The Rt Hon Lord Frost CMG, Minister of State - Cabinet Office

    17.00 - 18.00 

     

    CPS Director Robert Colvile interviews the Rt Hon Lord Frost CMG, former Chief EU Negotiator and Minister of State for the Cabinet Office, in front of a live audience.

     

     

    The CPS and CapX in conversation with the Rt Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg MP

    Moderator: Robert Colvile, Director - Centre for Policy Studies

    Speaker: The Rt Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council

    18.30 - 19.30 

     

    CPS Director and CapX Editor-in-Chief Robert Colvile interviews the Rt Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg, Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council, in front of a live audience.

     

     

     

    With thanks to our partner organisations

      

    We all have a responsibility to keep each other safe at this year’s Conservative Party Conference. Whilst the success of the vaccine programme has provided us with the opportunity to meet in-person this year, we all must take steps to stop the spread of COVID-19. Please have a look at the covid-19 guidelines.