(1915–2002) British sociologist and institutional designer. Author of the Labour Party's 1945 manifesto, he was not a conventional socialist. Most of his tireless innovation and institutional design focused on consumers and communities. Of the many institutions he created, the most enduring have been the Consumers' Association (1957); the Open University (endorsed by the incoming government in 1964); and the British arm of the University of the Third Age (created when Young and co-founder Peter Laslett were themselves at the statutory retirement age, in 1982). His satire The Rise of the Meritocracy (1958) warned in Orwellian fashion of the effect on the underclass of relentless sifting and screening by merit. It could be due for a revival.
From The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Politics in Oxford Reference.