The Cost of Disconnected Communities

30 January 2017

New research by the Eden Project and the Centre for Economics & Business Research looks into the cost of disconnected communities to the UK economy, and to various public services. It finds that it could be costing the UK economy £32 billion every year.

It also highlights what people find valuable about being active members of their communities and neighbourhoods, and finds an average cost saved per person per year, if we were all to engage with community activities.

The saving to public services equates to £2.9 billion today, rising to £8.1 billion if all the people not currently involved in community activities like The Big Lunch switch to being involved. Eden's The Big Lunch initiative aims for as many people as possible across the UK to have lunch with their neighbours annually on a Sunday in June (Sunday 18th June 2017), in a simple act of community, friendship and fun.

The study also reveals that neighbourliness has a huge welfare value, with over £14.5 billion saved each year because of resources shared and help provided by neighbours who know each other.

Read more on the study


Leon Ballin
Sustainable Food Cities

Sustainable Food Cities is a partnership programme run by

Soil Association

Food Matters

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation
Sustainable Food Cities is funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation