Who are the people and organisations making you hopeful for 2019? Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity and the academics and staff of LSE’s International Inequalities Institute tell us who’s inspiring them to believe that a better world is possible.
Philip Alston, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights. His recent visit to the UK was a model of how politicians can listen to and learn from the experiences of people living in difficult circumstances.
My sister has just had a second child and I continue to be energised by young people. Whether or not the increased awareness of social injustice that younger generations seem to have will go on to be entirely captured by corporate interests remains to be seen, but the expansion in our abilities to expose and rally support for injustice via information and communications technology is promising. I’m the first to admit that much of the technological “revolution” of the past 20 years has benefited the rich at the direct expense of the poor, but I can’t escape the feeling that we’re in a teething stage for global networked communication, and that it’s still possible to shape a technologically supported (not technologically driven) future that is, on the whole, more just.
Young people! My mentee, Theodora Balas, has so much energy, insight and intelligence, and is involved in tons of stuff (including founding her own organisation) at the age of just 19!
Brilliant environmental activism, from Extinction Rebellion to more local movements against toxic gold-mining like Save our Sperrins in County Tyrone. They are organised, smart, creative and determined and their work is going to the heart of tackling decision-making processes that lack transparency, vision and justice.
Nicola Jane Browne
The growing community of and around the Atlantic Fellows programme is making me more hopeful and more determined that together we can successfully challenge inequalities. It’s hugely inspiring to connect with activists across the world, some working on very local issues in their specific communities, others working on more abstract concepts underpinning equality. I am hopeful that I will continue to learn and draw strength and inspiration from this community in the coming year.
There is a breed of energetic human beings from different sectors who are concerned about inequality globally, all of whom are making their small contributions towards ending inequality, and committed to understanding how best to tackle these issues. You’ll find this breed in the Atlantic Fellowship, and they make me hopeful just being amongst them.
Fredrick Ouko Alucheli
Independent and intellectual thinking is often a luxury that most individuals, myself included, cannot afford. I am grateful for the past four months of the Atlantic Fellowship for having given me that opportunity, and hopeful that I will start sharing some of my thoughts in 2019.
The Atlantic Fellowship has been a wonderful experience and I can’t wait to share it in my work. The connections we have built with other fellows, and since then keeping in touch and sharing news of what we are all doing, is also exciting.
I really hope that in 2019 Jeremy Corbyn becomes the leader of the UK, and can start reversing the damage done by Conservatives to this country.
Patricio Espinoza Lucero
The minister in charge of UK income support programmes recently resigned (over Brexit) and her successor immediately admitted that there were clearly problems with the new programme, Universal Credit. This is a first, as the government previously denied that there were any problems at all despite the mounting evidence. Things must change, and hopefully this is the first sign.
A lot of people are realising that there is no easy solution or superhero politician capable of solving our problems, and instead they are getting ready take action themselves to work for structural change.
Nicola Jane Browne, 2018-19 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @nicolajbrowne
Taylor Downs, 2018-19 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @taylordowns2000
Patricio Espinoza Lucero, 2017-18 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @changespatricio
Dr Mark Fransham, research officer, International Inequalities Institute, London School of Economics and Social Policy @markfransham
Rose Longhurst, 2017-18 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity, @roselonghurst
Fredrick Ouko Alucheli, 2017-18 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @FredrickOuko1
Louis Oyaro, 2017-18 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @Yaro_Lo
Dr Aaron Reeves, associate professorial research fellow in poverty and inequality, International Inequalities Institute, London School of Economics and Social Policy, and associate professor in the Department of Social Policy and Intervention, University of Oxford @aaronsreeves
Louise Russell-Prywata, 2017-19 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @_LouiseRP
Anjali Sarker, 2018-19 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @anjalisarker
Pedro Telles, 2018-19 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity @pedrotelles