After leaving the University of Oxford in 1999 with a 2:1 (Hons) in English Literature and Language, I joined the UK civil service. In a variety of roles in the Neighbourhood Renewal Unit, I formulated and delivered policies to regenerate the poorest neighbourhoods in the country, ultimately developing and managing the £42m per year Single Community Programme.
While working in government, I was approached to take up a six-month secondment at the London School of Economics between 2002 and 2003, where I supported the independent review into the future of Birmingham’s £800m public housing stock.
In 2005, I won a prestigious Fulbright scholarship to travel to the US to identify lessons from state and federal anti-poverty programmes for the UK’s emergent ‘mixed communities’ policy.
I left the civil service in 2006 to join Shared Intelligence, a medium-sized profit-making consultancy. I consistently won, lead and delivered assignments for a wide range of clients, becoming a member of the Senior Management Team and board attendee.
Typical projects included:
* developing regeneration frameworks for towns and cities including Margate and Wembley;
* writing successful funding bids for Oxfordshire, Thurrock and the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Economic Partnership;
* evaluating programmes for major charity clients including Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie, and Victim Support.
During my ten years at Si, I co-authored Jigsaw Cities (Policy Press, 2007) with Prof. Anne Power; co-chaired the Urban Forum, a national charity that supported communities in the poorest neighbourhoods to have a voice in policy; and wrote articles for a range of newspapers, magazines and journals on public policy issues.
I also sat on steering and advisory groups for projects led by IPPR North, ResPublica and the Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion at the London School of Economics.
John P. Houghton
Freelance consultant
07941 479 092