How to localise pension investment and support local economies – new SPERI research project

People throughout the UK create a large amount of investable capital through saving for a pension. Yet this capital is rarely retained in the areas they live and work in. SPERI is embarking on a major new research project funded by the Barrow Cadbury Trust which will examine localising pension investments.

The project, led by Dr Craig Berry, will assess the potential for new ways to be found in which pension capital, from both private and public sector pensions funds, could be retained locally and used to increase sustainable, long-term investment.

Through stakeholder engagement and analysis of current pension fund investments, the project will develop proposals for new platforms to enable greater localisation of pension fund investments, and associated regulatory frameworks. It will explore key questions such as:

  • Where are the current and potential investment opportunities in local economies for pensions funds?
  • What are the barriers to pension funds investing locally?
  • What changes could local policymakers and businesses make to localise more pension investments?

In the first phase of the project a series of private workshops will be held in London, Birmingham, Manchester and Sheffield in autumn 2017. Each session will explore new ideas for localising investments and focus on the challenges and opportunities in each city region. Participants will include stakeholders from pension funds, councils and city region organisations, national and local businesses, universities as well as expert representatives from the finance and pension industries.

Dr Craig Berry, Deputy Director of SPERI, has extensive experience of working in the field of pensions policy, including as a pensions policy advisor at HM Treasury, Head of Policy and Senior Researcher at the International Longevity Centre-UK and at the Trades Union Congress where he was Pensions Policy Officer.  The project will also involve Tom Hunt, Policy Research Office at SPERI, and Adam Barber, doctoral researcher at SPERI.

For further information about the project please contact Dr Craig Berry –