Atlas Network founder Antony Fisher began his work in changing the climate of ideas 60 years ago, when he founded the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) in England. In the ensuing decades, the IEA laid the intellectual groundwork that made fundamental free-market reforms possible in the United Kingdom during the Thatcher revolution.
The IEA recently commemorated its 60th anniversary with a gala celebration in London attended by more than 375 people, including members of Parliament, journalists, and many generous supporters of the IEA’s work. Speakers included:
- Fisher’s daughter, Linda Whetstone, a board member of both IEA and Atlas Network, as well as chairman of Network for a Free Society;
- IEA Chairman Neil Record;
- IEA Director General Mark Littlewood;
- Sajid Javid, secretary of state for business, innovation and skills;
- Dominic Raab, parliamentary under secretary of state;
- Mark Pennington, economist at King’s College;
- Martin Durkin, television documentarian;
- and Master of Ceremonies Glynn Brailsford, IEA’s creative director;
The gala presentations reviewed 60 years of work, shared personal stories of the impact that IEA has had on their lives, and introduced the brand new Paragon Initiative, a multi-year plan to put every U.K. government activity under the microscope; identify what government should, and should not, be doing; and identify best practices from around the world to improve services.
IEA’s 60th anniversary gala was an uplifting and inspiring evening, filled with a fond look back at successes of the past and a firm eye on plans for the years ahead.
View the IEA Roll of Honour, a celebration of those who have been part of IEA’s story and struggle to date.