Resolution Foundation

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Resolution Foundation
Resolution Foundation logo.jpg
Abbreviation RF
Formation 2005
Founder Clive Cowdery
Type Think tank
Legal status Registered charity
Headquarters 2 Queen Anne’s Gate, Westminster, London SW1H 9AA
Chief Executive
Gavin Kelly
Executive Chair
David Willetts

The Resolution Foundation is an independent think tank that aims to improve living standards for low- to middle-income families in the United Kingdom.[1]

The Resolution Foundation conducts analytical research on living standards in the UK and produces policy solutions that help shape the debate on economic and social issues. From February 2011 to October 2012 the Resolution Foundation hosted the Commission on Living Standards, an independent and wide-ranging investigation into the pressures facing people on low to middle incomes. The Commission’s final report, Gaining from Growth, was published in October 2012, providing the most authoritative account to date of long-term trends in UK living standards and the practical steps that can be taken to support incomes in the coming years.[2]

The Resolution Foundation is primarily funded by the Resolution Trust. In 2013, it was given a 'B' rating by the transparency monitoring website WhoFundsYou?[3]


Gavin Kelly joined the Foundation as Chief Executive in autumn 2010. In recent years, the Foundation’s work has focused on the underlying living standards of low- to middle-income groups, with a strong emphasis on the labour market.

Former Conservative MP and Universities minister David Willetts became the Executive Chair of the Foundation in June 2015.[4]


  • Clive Cowdery- Founder and Chairman.  Chairman of Resolution Life.
  • Tina Alexandrou- Formerly principle consultant to KPMG's insurance division.
  • Sue Regan- Former adviser to David Blunkett MP.
  • Patrick Stevens- Partner,  Ernst & Young.


The Resolution Foundation was founded by entrepreneur Clive Cowdery in 2005. Its purpose is to produce high-quality research and analysis that highlights the challenges facing those on low to middle incomes, and to develop policy solutions to these problems.

Sue Regan led the organisation as Chief Executive from 2005 – 2010, during which time the Resolution Foundation campaigned on the need to fill the gap in independent financial advice available to middle income groups. It secured a commitment from government that generic financial advice would form a key element of its long-term financial capability strategy. This helped bring about the creation of a national Money Guidance Service in March 2010, later succeeded by the Money Advice Service.

Regan was succeeded as Chief Executive by Gavin Kelly in autumn 2010.

Current activity[edit]

The present activities of the Foundation fall into the following areas:

  • Wages and income – RF explores how pay in different parts of the workforce has fared and what has underpinned this. It also looks at how employment trends, productivity and technology might affect future wages and, consequently, living standards.
  • Housing – The Foundation examines the pressure housing places on personal finances. It also seeks to set out policy proposals that improve the quality, supply and security of housing for those on low and middle incomes.
  • Work and security – Research looks at how the changing labour market is affecting the nature of work itself. Focus is on the persistence of low pay, the growth of self-employment and the rise in insecure forms of work.
  • Debt and savings – The Foundation highlights the risk of ‘debt overhang’, the risk of heavily indebted households facing severe financial stress when interest rates return to normal levels.
  • Welfare and tax reform – A major area of the Foundation’s work surrounds how the state can better support low- and middle-income groups. Topics of note include assessing how successful welfare reforms like Universal Credit will be at incentivising paid work.
  • Childcare and families – The Foundation’s research focuses on how to ensure that parents can combine work with their familial responsibilities through more affordable, high-quality childcare and social care.
  • Fiscal choices – Resolution Foundation has done extensive research and modelling to scrutinise government spending decisions. The Foundation aims to evaluate the impact of fiscal policy on lower income groups.
  • Shared growth – Work in this area looks at policy solutions to ensure that as many sections of society as possible see their living standards rise in line with the nation’s economic growth.


UK Social Policy Think Tank of the Year (2015)[5]

UK Think Tank of the Year (2013)[6]

UK Social Policy Think Tank of the Year and Publication of the Year (2012)[7]


  1. ^ "About Resolution Foundation". Resolution Foundation. Retrieved 3 May 2013. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Resolution Foundation | Who Funds You?". Retrieved 2015-08-07.  line feed character in |title= at position 25 (help)
  4. ^ "David Cameron can unleash young people's talents - by getting their wages up again". Retrieved 2015-08-07. 
  5. ^ "Think Tank Awards 2015 winners | Prospect Magazine". Retrieved 2015-08-07. 
  6. ^ "Prospect Think Tank Awards 2013: The winners | Prospect Magazine". Retrieved 2015-08-07. 
  7. ^ "Think Tank of the Year Awards 2012 | Prospect Magazine". Retrieved 2015-08-07. 

External links[edit]