12 October 2023
10:45am - 4:20pm

The climate emergency presents unprecedented challenges, demanding urgent responses from not just governments and businesses, but also from households and communities.  

Existing visions for the UK’s journey to net zero fail to mitigate the potential risk of unequal impacts on different people and places. This calls for a critical reflection around how net zero policy is designed, and how we collaborate for net zero policy to be delivered, for a just transition.  

On 12 October 2023, the Institute for Community Studies at The Young Foundation will launch new insights and findings, the results of a two year programme of work. Our research takes a place-based, person-centred approach to consider the multiple and intersecting ways in which net zero policies are likely to affect people’s daily lives in their communities, and how the overall policy environment plays a role in their ability to meaningfully participate. The research brings together findings from an extensive evidence review, and participatory research with people living across seven neighbourhoods in the North of England, who face different economic and social vulnerabilities.  

This research has been funded by the Nuffield Foundation.

Our online launch event will discuss:

  • national policy and how it can be better leveraged to support households, communities and places – particularly those most at risk of being ‘left behind’ – to participate in the UK’s journey to net zero. 
  • regional perspectives, exploring the different players and roles required to unlock a place-based, person-centred approach for a just transition to net zero. Attendees will also have opportunities to share their own learning and insights, and to explore what is needed in future to further develop provision. 

Our developing cast of high-profile speakers and panellists includes Helen Goulden OBE, CEO of The Young Foundation; Alex Beer, Programme Head at Nuffield Foundation; Emily Morrison and Tania Carregha from the Institute of Community Studies; Georgia Spooner of Stroud District Council; Lorenza Casini at Carbon Co-op, Stephen Frost at Institute for Public Policy Research, and Anna Valero at LSE’s Centre for Economic Performance. Other participants to be announced.

The morning keynotes and panel discussions will have a national policy focus, while the afternoon sessions will have a regional policy focus. Attendees are welcome to join the event for either the full day or for specific sessions they are most interested in.


Morning sessions: national policy focus

10.45am: Welcome and introductions

From Helen Goulden OBE, Chief Executive at The Young Foundation, and Alex Beer, Programme Head of Welfare at Nuffield Foundation.

11am: Keynote One – to be announced

11.20am: Report launch: Family and community vulnerabilities in the transition to net zero sharing research findings and national policy recommendations from our two-year programme of work.

11.40am: Panel discussion

How can national policy better support household, community and place participation in the UK’s journey to net zero, for a more just transition?

Delegates will have the opportunity to participate in a live Q&A. 

1pm: Break

Afternoon sessions: regional policy focus

2pm: Welcome and Keynote Two – to be announced

2.20pm: Report launch: Family and community vulnerabilities in the transition to net zero sharing the programme’s regional findings, place-based approach, and new Index of Readiness.

2.40pm: Panel discussion

A place-based, person-centred approach for a just transition to net zero: whose role is it anyway?

Delegates will have the opportunity to participate in a live Q&A. 

3.55pm: Keynote Three – to be announced

4.15pm: Closing remarks

The Institute for Community Studies is a research and evidence centre with people at its heart. Powered by the not-for-profit organisation, The Young Foundation, we work to influence positive change, bridging the gap between communities, research, and policymaking. This work has been carried out in partnership with University of Leeds, University of York and Trinity College Dublin.   

The Nuffield Foundation is an independent charitable trust with a mission to advance social well-being. It funds research that informs social policy, primarily in Education, Welfare, and Justice. The Nuffield Foundation is the founder and co-funder of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, the Ada Lovelace Institute and the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory. The Foundation has funded this project, but the views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily the Foundation.  

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