New Economics Foundation

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The New Economics Foundation
Abbreviation NEF
Motto Building a new economy where people really take control
Formation 1986; 30 years ago (1986)
Type public policy think tank
Headquarters 10 Salamanca Place, London, United Kingdom
Chief Executive
Marc Stears

The New Economics Foundation is a British think-tank that aims to help build a "new economy where people are really in control".[1]

The Foundation was founded in 1986 by the leaders of The Other Economic Summit (TOES) with the aim of working for a "new model of wealth creation, based on equality, diversity and economic stability".[2]

The Foundation has around 50 staff mainly based in London and is active at a range of different levels. Its programmes include work on housing, reform of the financial system, the future of work, democracy and devolution and climate and environment.


The Foundation works in the areas of community development, democracy, and economics. The foundation's work on sustainability indicators, which measures aspects of life and environment, indicated the connection between economic growth and sustainability.[3]

From 1995 to 2000, the Foundation made social audits of companies to measure and evaluate a company's social and ethical performance according to its standards. This work was instrumental in the formation of the Institute of Social and Ethical Accountability to promote professional standards around social accounting and auditing.[4]

Jubilee 2000 campaign[edit]

Main article: Jubilee 2000

The Jubilee 2000 campaign, strategised for and run by NEF,[5] collected 24 million signatures for its worldwide petition on development and poverty.[6]

Local Money Flows[edit]

NEF has also developed a Local money Flows measurement program and enables the mapping of money flows through the local economy.[7]

Happy Planet Index[edit]

Main article: Happy Planet Index

In July 2006, the Foundation launched the Happy Planet Index, intended to challenge existing indices of a state's success, such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and Human Development Index (HDI).

21-hour working week[edit]

In February 2010 the New Economics Foundation called for gradual transition to a working week of 21 hours.[8]


James Robertson, a British economist, and Alison Pritchard, a Schumacher Society Council member, helped to set up The Other Economic Summit (TOES) and NEF.[9] Ed Mayo was Chief Executive from 1992 until 2003.[10] The current chief executive is Marc Stears.

The organisation has launched a range of new organisations to promote its ideas, including the Ethical Trading Initiative, AccountAbility, Time Banking UK, London Rebuilding Society, the Community Development Finance Association, and others.

The organisation's current projects include work on community-based housing, worker organising in the digital economy, restoring local banking and challenging xenophobia and racism in the Brexit debate. It is also active in community economic regeneration. The Foundation's BizFizz program, an entrepreneurship development program has created more than 900 new businesses in deprived areas. The organisation has now taken this and Local Alchemy to six other countries through its international programme.

The Foundation's public events attract well-known speakers. Its Clone Town campaign in favour of local economic diversity was covered two years running by every major national newspaper and TV news station and it was taken up in the Save Our Small Shops Campaign in the Evening Standard.


NEF is a registered charity and is funded by individual supporters, public finance businesses and international grant-giving bodies.[11]


Publications include:

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

"New Index (Inner City 100) will Reward Inner City Innovations", University of Sheffield