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February Newsletter
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A call for submissions from London-based charities
Pro Bono Economics is looking for prospective partners to apply for its 2019 London Support Programme, which is offered to charities whose work focuses on the wellbeing of people in Greater London. This has been made possible through the support of the City Bridge Trust and is a fantastic opportunity for ambitious charities curious to learn more about what their outcome data can tell them about their impact on society. We would encourage submissions from charities that address mental health and loneliness, but also welcome applications concerning education, employment, poverty and complex needs. More information on the programme and application details can be found here.
A new webpage to celebrate Pro Bono Economics’ 10th Anniversary
To celebrate our 10th Year, Pro Bono Economics has launched a dedicated new webpage containing all anniversary-related information in one place. Currently available pieces include a contribution to the Employment Related Services Association's blog, discussing the motivations of our co-founders in setting up the charity and Pro Bono Economics’ first project for St. Giles Trust, along with a similarly themed piece featured in the Royal Economic Society’s January Newsletter. Throughout the year more content will be added to the site to mark the occasion, notably illustrative case studies capturing the key takeaways from some of our most notable report launches over the last decade. This will also be the place to find all the latest updates on our Annual Lecture, where our co-founder and Trustee Andy Haldane, Chief Economist at the Bank of England, will discuss the Fourth Industrial Revolution and its impact on the charity sector.
Pro Bono Economics, Pilotlight and Cranfield Trust announce new homelessness programme, funded by the Oak Foundation 
As reported in Alliance Magazine on February 8th, Pro Bono Economics has recently begun working with fellow volunteering charities Pilotlight and Cranfield Trust to offer a co-ordinated programme of support to homelessness charities. The programme will see the charities matched with business, financial and impact support tailored to their needs, with the aim of enhancing their long-term resilience. Each tailored advisory package will be delivered by skilled professional volunteers. For more information on the programme, please contact Jessica Harneyford. Pro Bono Economics has also – through our second monthly blog – examined publicly available numbers relating to homelessness in this country, and whether they are all telling the same story. This as part of our ongoing objective to a build wider understanding of data and evidence in topical areas such as this.
 
Pro Bono Economics calls for focus on early intervention and further research into the determinants of poor mental health in men and boys
On the 13th of February 2019, Pro Bono Economics submitted a response to an inquiry from the Women and Equalities Committee on the mental health of men and boys. Drawing on past work on the impact of interventions in the mental health space the submission recommends that an increased emphasis on wellbeing at an early age from policymakers could help develop resilience in boys and young men. This is illustrated by Pro Bono Economics’ 2018 report for children’s mental health charity Place2Be, which found that the early years counselling service it offers brings significant cost savings to society through reductions in factors such as smoking, depression and crime, and increased employment and wage outcomes. Another key recommendation made within the submission stresses the need for further research in the area, particularly regarding determinants. The paper can be read in full by clicking here.
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Pro Bono Economics Colleagues in the Media
February 5th, 2019: Patron Lord Jim O’Neill was announced as a speaker at the Great Northern Conference, due to take place on February 26th, as reported in the Yorkshire Evening Post. Bringing together leading business and political figures in the North, the summit will examine how best to boost its local economy and create opportunities for citizens in the area. More information is available on the conference’s website, and tickets can be purchased via Eventbrite.

February 7th, 2019: Lord Gus O'Donnell authored the foreword for the Centre for Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy and the Social Market Foundation Policy Report: "Which way now? Economic policy after a decade of upheaval".Patron Vicky Pryce featured as a panellist at the launch event for this report.

February 13th, 2019: Chair of Trustees Lord Gus O’Donnell spoke at the Resolution Foundation’s event, “Happy Now? Wellbeing lessons for policy makers”, where the Foundation presented the key findings of new research into lessons for economic policy makers using a broader focus on wellbeing. Lord O’Donnell was part of a panel of experts and discussed the importance of considering wellbeing when creating policy.

February 14th, 2019: Patron Diane Coyle wrote a piece on GDP in Project Syndicate, questioning the value of the measure for determining economic success. The piece examines the potential alternatives, with options including direct measurement of wellbeing or happiness. This follows on from previous work examining GDP; in October 2017 Diane Coyle was awarded The Indigo Prize for an entry titled Making the Future Count, in which she proposed the introduction of a dashboard system to replace GDP along with co-author Benjamin Mitra-Khan.

February 15th, 2019: Co-Founder and Trustee Andy Haldane spoke to the Hull Daily Mail about the inaugural Bank of England Citizens Panel, which will be held in Hull. Announced during an RSA report launch in March 2018, these panels are deliberative processes between policy makers and citizens. Andy Haldane stated the Bank wished to “listen to as wide a range of voices as possible – young and old, savers and borrowers, those in and out of work, home-owners and renters” to discover what these people think about the economy.
Mulberry Bush
On the 25th of February 2019 Pro Bono Economics published a literature review for therapeutic residential care (TRC) charity Mulberry Bush, which notes the significant research gaps within the TRC area. The report also examines limitations within the existing research, including selection bias and a lack of standardised framework, and shows that focusing research on immediate – as opposed to long-term – impacts may be of use in developing an outcome framework to measure impacts in future. Our thanks go to Thomas Dooner and Richard James, the Cabinet Office volunteers who carried out this review.
 
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