29 April 2022

The CapX Podcast: John Penrose on escaping the poverty trap


Should poverty be defined by how much you earn, how much less money you have than the average household, or something altogether more holistic – the myriad of interlocking factors, from health to social capital to transport links, that define someone’s quality of life?

That’s the question that Conservative MP John Penrose grappled with in his landmark report, ‘Poverty Trapped’, released at the end of last year. As well as an acute diagnosis of the problems of measuring poverty purely in terms of income, it’s full of workable policy solutions to help spread opportunity and raise people’s quality of life without simply spraying money about from Whitehall and hoping for the best.

Our editor John Ashmore caught up with John earlier this week to discuss some of his ideas, including one housing policy which he says could be the biggest ‘single moment of wealth creation’ since the Second World War.


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John Ashmore is Editor of CapX.