Tom Bentley

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Tom Bentley, Progressive Governance Conference 2009

Tom Bentley is an author and policy analyst based in Australia. Bentley was born and educated in the United Kingdom, where he gained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from the University of Oxford.

Bentley was formerly executive director for policy and cabinet for the Premier of Victoria, Australia,[1] and was then deputy chief of staff to Prime Minister Julia Gillard[2] and part-time director of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government.[3] Between 1998 and 2006 he was director of DEMOS[4] - described by The Economist as ‘Britain's most influential think tank'. Prior to his role at Demos he was a special adviser to David Blunkett MP, then Secretary of State for Education and Employment,[5] where he worked on issues including school curriculum reform, social inclusion, creativity, citizenship, adult skills and area-based regeneration. He has been a trustee and chair of the Learning Programme for the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts (NESTA)[6] and a trustee of the Community Action Network in London.

Bentley has been a regular contributor to The Guardian, The Observer,[7] the Financial Times and the New Statesman as well as regularly being interviewed for print and broadcast media.


  • Learning beyond the classroom: education for a changing world (Routledge, 1998), ISBN 978-0415182591
  • The Creative Age: knowledge and skills for a new economy (Demos, 1999), ISBN 978-1898309703
  • Letting go: complexity, individualism and the left (Renewal, 2002),
  • The Adaptive State: strategies for personalising the public realm (Demos 2003), ISBN 978-1841801155
  • People Flow (co-authors Alessandra Buonfino, Theo Veenkamp, Demos 2003) ISBN 1841801089 online
  • Everyday Democracy: why we get the politicians we deserve (Demos, 2005) ISBN 978-1841801469


  1. ^ Button, James (2006-07-13). "Former Blair 'policy wonk' to advise Bracks". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 2008-08-31. 
  2. ^ "Prime Minister Julia Gillard". Business Spectator. 2010-11-11. Archived from the original on 24 September 2012. Retrieved 2010-11-11. 
  3. ^ Bentley, Tom (2006-11-23). "Innovation drives growth". The Courier-Mail. Retrieved 2008-08-31. 
  4. ^ Adcock, Robert; Bevir, Mark; Stimson, Shannon C. (2007). Modern Political Science. Princeton University Press. p. 292. ISBN 978-0-691-12874-0. Retrieved 2008-08-31. 
  5. ^ Bentley, Tom (2002-02-10). "Time to stop 'teaching the test'". The Observer. London. Retrieved 2008-08-31. 
  7. ^ Bentley, Tom (2002-08-04). "The view from above". The Observer. London. Retrieved 2008-08-31.