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£50,000 prize announced for solving UK’s housing crisis

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The Institute of Economic Affairs has launched the second Richard Koch Breakthrough Prize, with Jacob Rees-Mogg MP on the judging panel. First prize of £50,000 will be awarded to the best and boldest entry outlining a ‘Free Market Breakthrough’ policy to solve the UK housing crisis.

Competitors will be asked to propose a single policy initiative which would:

• Increase the number of houses built so as to markedly reduce the housing shortage in this country (this can be reduced through increased rental or ownership).

• Increase the number and proportion of property owners in the UK

• Be politically possible

Submissions are welcomed from individuals, groups of individuals, academia, the not-for-profit sector and all corporate bodies. There is also a Student Prize which all students will be eligible for.

The Prize pool consists of £61,500, including a £50,000 grand prize for the winning entry, 3x £2,500 student prizes and 1x dedicated school student prize.

Richard Koch – the benefactor and supporter of the Prize – is a British author, speaker, investor, and a former management consultant and entrepreneur. He has written over twenty books on business and ideas, including The 80/20 Principle, about how to apply the Pareto principle in management and life.

Judging panel

Richard Koch, Former management consultant and entrepreneur
Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, Conservative MP for North East Somerset
Mark Littlewood, Director General, Institute of Economic Affairs

Commenting on the prize, Jacob Rees-Mogg said: “Building more houses and supporting home ownership are the two great challenges for Conservatives. A property-owning democracy provides one of the most stable and prosperous forms of society. Its erosion denies people their reasonable life’s ambition.

“This issue could determine the Conservative electoral fortunes which is why we need to seek out new and exciting policy ideas and why initiatives like the IEA’s Richard Koch Breakthrough Prize are so vital.”

Mark Littlewood, Director General at the Institute of Economic Affairs said:

“Market-based policies have the power to dramatically change the economy and society for the greater good. The capacity and bandwith of Government has been taken over by Brexit for the past two years, but now it is time politicians looked beyond Brexit, to the pressing domestic issues of our time – arguably the most pressing of which is the cost of housing.”



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