Industry and Parliament Trust
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The Industry and Parliament Trust (IPT) is a charity that works to promote the mutual understanding of Parliament and business. It works within the Parliament of the United Kingdom, the European Parliament and with organisations from all sectors of industry. It is non-partisan, non-lobbying and not-for-profit.
Its activities include:
- Fellowship programmes for Members of Parliament (MPs), Members of the European Parliament (MEPs), peers and senior parliamentary staff. Fellowships provide the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in one more companies through bespoke programmes of placements;
- Courses, seminars, panel discussions, lectures and events for policymakers, businesspeople and civil servants;
- Attachments for civil servants.
A quarter of the current House of Commons are Fellows of the Industry and Parliament Trust. Fellowships are open to all MPs, peers, UK MEPs and senior House Staff irrespective of their political party. Most Fellowships consist of 18 days over 18 to 24 months, and all programmes are explicitly educational and non-lobbying, intended to give parliamentarians a greater understanding of the issues facing business and the British economy.
High-profile IPT Fellows include:
- The Rt Hon David Blunkett MP
- The Rt Hon Andrew Stunell OBE MP
- The Hon Ed Vaizey MP
- Tom Watson (politician) MP
- John Whittingdale OBE MP
- The Rt Hon Baroness Fookes DBE DL
- The Rt Hon Baroness Jay of Paddington
- The Rt Hon Lord Martin of Springburn, former Speaker of the British House of Commons
- The Rt Hon Baron Mawhinney
- The Rt Hon Lord McFall of Alcluith
- The Rt Hon Lord McNally PC
Former MPs who are IPT Fellows include:
Governance and secretariat
The IPT Board of Trustees includes six MPs and three members of the House of Lords. It also includes Brendan Keith, Clerk of the House of Lords, and Paul Evans, Principal Clerk of Select Committees. The current chair of the trustees is Baroness Harris of Richmond and the Presidents are the Speaker of the House of Commons, The Rt Hon John Bercow MP, the Speaker of the House of Lords, The Rt Hon Baroness D'Souza CMG, and Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, The Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP 
The Chief Executive is Nick Maher who began at the IPT in July 2011 having previously served in the Ministry of Defence on a team constructing a 'New Employment Model' for the Armed Forces. His predecessor was Sally Muggeridge, who served as Chief Executive for seven years.
The IPT employs 13 staff, all based in Whitehall, London.
The IPT was founded in 1977 by the CEOs of 10 major British companies who sought to create dialogue between business and Parliament. It became a registered charity in 1983. The IPT has organised more than 600 Fellowship programmes since it was founded in 1977.
When the IPT was set up, just 15% of MPs had any direct business experience. Today that figure is around 46%. Needless to say there is still a substantial proportion of MPs without the necessary understanding of business
In October 2009 the IPT commissioned a research project into the business experience of the Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs) who stood in the 2010 General Election. The research found that of the PPCs in winnable seats, less than half (48%) had any form of business management or financial services experience.
The IPT has sister projects in Wales (Industry and National Assembly for Wales Association), Scotland (Scottish Parliament Business Exchange) and Northern Ireland (Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust).
- Industry and Parliament Trust Annual Report 2012
- Presidents & Trustees
- Brook, Rosemary (1994). "The Industry and Parliament Trust: Contributing to better government and greater prosperity of UK plc". Journal of Communication Management. 4(1), 57-63.
- PPCs Business Backgrounds: An Analysis