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Character, responsibility and life chances: the implications for policy

Richard Reeves, Director of Demos discussed the issue of 'character' (specifically, a sense of agency, personal responsibility, and the ability to stick to a task) and its correlation with an individual's wellbeing and success. He also discussed the policy implications of evidence that individuals from underprivileged backgrounds are less likely to develop 'character' skills than their more affluent peers, and the prospects for redressing these inequalities. 

Richard Reeves is a former Director of Futures at The Work Foundation; Society Editor of The Observer; principal policy adviser to the Minister for Welfare Reform; Economics Correspondent and Washington Correspondent of The Guardian; research fellow at the think tank, Institute for Public Policy Research; and a postgraduate researcher at the University of London. He is also an essayist for the New Statesman magazine and editor-at-large and columnist for Management Today, for which he writes a monthly column. He is also a regular contributor to The Guardian, Observer and Prospect magazine as well as a range of national radio and television programmes. Richard's principal areas of interest are the economics and politics of wellbeing; trends in British politics; and the future of the workplace.