Our History

History of Network for a Free Society

In 1971 Antony Fisher, one of the founders of the Institute for Economic Affairs and Arthur Shenfield, founded the International Institute for Economic Research (IIER) to promote the study of the effect of moral and political factors on the operation of economic laws, advancing knowledge of economic political and international relations, providing support to individuals engaged in research in the field of economic science and working with other charitable bodies engaged I similar activities. In effect it was to be an international institute of economic

After producing a few studies it became dormant and since 1984 it has been run under different names for management reasons although continuing to do the same work.

In 1984 its name was changed to Atlas Economic Research Foundation UK to work in collaboration with the Atlas Economic Research Foundation US which Antony Fisher had founded in San Francisco in 1981. After his death in 1988 it was run independently from its US ‘sister’ organisation by his daughter Linda Whetstone and then in 2001, in a move to make it more active, it became the International Policy Network UK with Linda Whetstone as Chairman and Julian Morris and Roger Bate as Directors. They had both previously been working at the Institute of Economic Affairs on environmental issues. A US International Policy Network was also set up to collaborate with IPN UK.

At the end of 2010 it was decided that IPN US would be run from the USA in future so IPN UK became Network for a Free Society under the direction of Linda Whetstone with Robert Boyd, Michael Fisher and Kendra Okonski on the

History of ‘Ideas for a Free Society’