The Wilberforce Society

The Wilberforce Society

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    The Wilberforce Society

The Wilberforce Society is the first student-run political think tank to have been established in the UK, based at the University of Cambridge.

We facilitate a unique, mutually beneficial dialogue between Cambridge students and national policymakers, across all areas of public policy, from the domestic to the foreign, from the social to the economic.

Our work is carried out in two forms, led by our dedicated committee. Our first type of work is on commissions, in the past from MPs and Lords. For such assignments, committees are formed which work corporately over a period of weeks or months to produce substantial pieces of work.

Our second type of work is the production of proposals by individuals and small groups. These proposals are then discussed at open meetings to which a guest expert is invited. The guest helps establish the background of the policy area and assists us in assessing the proposals presented. Examples of this form of work are available on this website.

Aside from policy research, we function at the centre of Cambridge students’ political life, as the focal point for mutual dialogue between students and frontline policymakers. TWS Ideas provides a relaxed setting for informal debates on broad questions of public policy, and the TWS Forum is the networking seminar for the leaders of student political societies.

We have established strong links with YouGov, the research company acclaimed as the UK’s most accurate opinion pollster. This association provides us with formidable access to data to aid us in the production of our proposals.

Find out more

The Wilberforce Society website

Gift announcements

Cambridge owes its world-leading excellence in research and teaching to the generosity of its supporters. Our history is synonymous with a history of far-sighted benefaction, and the same is as true today as it has ever been.

Gift announcement
LycaHealth, the new healthcare brand, have presented a donation of £150,000 to Cambridge University to support Sri Lankan students and improve public health in Sri Lanka.   
Gift announcement
Multi-million pound legacy to create a new 'Ray and Dagmar Dolby Court' at Pembroke College

Impact of giving

Philanthropic giving is at the heart of the success of the Collegiate University, enabling us to make discoveries that change the world and to ensure that our students received an unrivalled education.

Wolfson Laser Lab
Philanthropic impact story
In 2016 the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology will bid farewell to central Cambridge and move into its new £60m purpose-built home on the West Cambridge Science and Technology Campus.
The new Laboratory of Molecular Biology at Addenbrooke's hospital
Philanthropic impact story
At any one time, more than 1000 clinical trials are being conducted across the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, the largest gathering of clinical, pharmaceutical and biomedical research specialists in Europe. These trials are a crucial step in the design of new medicines and medical devices – translating ideas that started in a research laboratory into new treatments for patients.