COVID-19 – Shape the Future

The British Academy’s Shape the Future programme will explore how to create a positive post-pandemic future for people, the economy and the environment.
Policy, International


Shape the Future will bring insights from the social sciences, humanities and the arts together to shape a positive future for people, the economy and the environment. We want to convene our community in ways we have never done before, bridging across sectors and disciplines, integrating insights to help inform policy, and encouraging interdisciplinary learning. We will focus on issues that cannot be treated in policy silos to bring considerations of place, ethics and shared values together with the long view and the world view.


The programme will map out future policy and research agendas under three broad themes:

  • Revitalising societal well-being
  • Recreating an inclusive economy around purpose
  • Exploring the cultures and histories of science, policy, and politics from which we can learn.

The activities we deliver will use the expertise of the Academy and its communities, drawing on some of the UK’s, and the world’s, top experts across the humanities and social sciences, and utilising our ability to link both to culture and the arts, and to ideas and insights from the natural sciences.

An initial series of workshops will bring together researchers and stakeholder across our community to review the landscape, explore the knowledge base and consider visions of the future. Initial, policy and practitioner-focussed summaries of these workshops will be used as the basis to further engage policy makers and others and to help understand the implications of different issues.

We will provide a platform to use our communities’ expertise to convene an inclusive, interdisciplinary response to how we recover and look beyond the global pandemic to shape a positive future.


The British Academy 10-Minute Talks: COVID-19 and inequalities

23 Sep 2020 The British Academy on YouTube

In this talk, Fiona Williams discusses the ways in which COVID-19 has amplified existing inequalities and created new insecurities.


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