Dan Corry is director of the New Local Government Network, a Labour-leaning think tank that has developed a number of influential ideas within its policy area. Corry is particularly viewed as an advocate of 'new localism', a strain of thought that suggests the quality of local services and democracy can be enhanced through a cautious but progessive devolution of power from the centre to the locality.
Corry was previously a political advisor to the Labour government, working at the Department of Trade and Industry with Peter Mandelson and at the Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions under Stephen Byers. While at ODPM, he helped to produce a white paper, 'Strong Local Leadership, Quality Public Services'. This led to some devolutionary measures, including new freedoms for all councils to borrow capital and greater financial flexibility for the best performers. It also introduced the comprehensive performance assessment, which ranks every English council into one of five performance categories ranging from 'poor' to 'excellent'.
Since arriving at NLGN, Corry has increased the think tank's output with a focus on areas such as user choice, governance, technology and public-private partnerships. This resulted in NLGN winning the 'think tank of the year' award in 2004.
Before becoming a special advisor, Corry had worked as a Treasury civil servant, a Labour party advisor in opposition and a researcher at the Institute for Public Policy Research, a left-leaning think tank founded by the former Labour leader Neil Kinnock.