Nick Boles studied Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Magdalen College, Oxford, and was awarded a first class degree. Having won a Kennedy Scholarship, he studied for a Masters in Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. Nick spent the first 10 years of his career in business and was co-founder and chief executive of a small group of companies supplying paint brushes and rollers to the DIY industry.
In 2001, Nick set up Policy Exchange which went on to become the most influential think tank on the centre right. In 2005, Nick stood for Parliament in Hove but lost by 420 votes. From 2008 to 2010, Nick led the process of drawing up the Conservative Party’s detailed plans for government. In May 2010, he was elected as Conservative MP for Grantham and Stamford with a majority of over 15,000.
In September 2010, Nick published his first book 'Which Way’s Up? The future for coalition Britain and how to get there'. In November 2010, he was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to Nick Gibb MP, the Minister of State for Schools. Nick is a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Government.
The future of the Coalition
The formation of the Coalition was an earthquake in British politics; as a result, our whole political system is in flux. In his influential book, Which Way’s Up, Nick was the first person to call for the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats to form an electoral pact at the 2015 election and to seek a mandate to govern as a Coalition for 10 years. As one of David Cameron’s closest allies, Nick can give an authoritative account of the fortunes of the Coalition: its origins and aims, as well as the challenges it faces and the risks to its long term survival.
Turning round a failing brand: lessons from the ‘nasty party’
Nick was one of a very small band of early Tory modernisers. From 2001 to 2005, he developed a devastating analysis of public attitudes towards the Conservative brand. Once David Cameron had been elected leader of the Conservative Party, Nick worked with his advisers to devise initiatives to close the gap between the values of the majority of the British people and what they perceived as the values of the Conservative Party. Nobody is better placed to describe the modernisers’ efforts to detoxify the Conservative brand and to show how their failure to finish the job deprived the party of an overall majority at the 2010 election.
The BRICs: an opportunity for Britain plc
The media and politicians like to focus on the competitive threat posed by the economic rise of China, India, Brazil and China. But the rise of a global middle class, with ambitions to send their children to study at the world’s best universities, to benefit from first class professional advice and to invest their savings in sophisticated financial products, offers Britain unparalleled opportunities. In 'Which Way’s Up' Nick sets out what the Government should do to help British businesses exploit the new world order.