Author Archive: Democratic Audit UK

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Throughout history, only violent and catastrophic events have significantly cut inequality

Throughout history, only violent and catastrophic events have significantly cut inequality

Are mass violence and catastrophes the only forces that can seriously decrease economic inequality? To judge by thousands of years of history, the answer is yes, argues Walter Scheidel in this extract from his new book, The Great Leveller: Violence and the History of Inequality from the Stone Age to the 21st Century. Over thousands […]

Not without prejudice: LGBT politicians talk about how Parliament has changed

Not without prejudice: LGBT politicians talk about how Parliament has changed

This month the Constitution Unit at UCL hosted a panel discussion on LGBT candidates in UK elections, exploring the UK parliament’s evolution to include more openly LGBT politicians than any other state legislature. The panel, chaired by Dr Jennifer Hudson, consisted of Professor Andrew Reynolds and four of the UK’s most prominent LGBT politicians: Angela Eagle, […]

Book review | The Cabinet Office 1916-2016, by Anthony Seldon

Book review | The Cabinet Office 1916-2016, by Anthony Seldon

The Cabinet Office: 1916-2016, written by Anthony Seldon with Jonathan Meakin, offers a detailed history of the Cabinet Office from its creation during World War I up to the present as well as the 11 Cabinet Secretaries that have served as part of this constant, if somewhat hidden, presence in the otherwise changing political landscape of the UK. […]

What the ECJ’s ruling on headscarves means (and why it may be tough to enforce)

What the ECJ’s ruling on headscarves means (and why it may be tough to enforce)

The European Court of Justice’s ruling this week does not ban employees from wearing headscarves at work, contrary to some media coverage. Rather, it allows bosses to ban them – along with other symbols of religious belief – if the job is customer-facing and the workplace has a neutrality policy. Steve Peers predicts that such bans may […]

Watch | Religious intolerance and its impact on democracy – Asma Jilani Jihangir & Amartya Sen

Watch | Religious intolerance and its impact on democracy – Asma Jilani Jihangir & Amartya Sen

‘It is a question of tolerating intolerance’: Asma Jilani Jahangir and Professor Amartya Sen discuss the impact of religious intolerance on democracy in a lecture at the LSE. Jahangir is a Pakistani human rights lawyer and social activist who co-founded and chaired the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. Sen is Thomas W. Lamont University Professor, and […]

Never mind NICs: gender budgeting reveals the Spring Budget’s true impact on poorer women

Never mind NICs: gender budgeting reveals the Spring Budget’s true impact on poorer women

Last week’s Spring Budget failed to reverse a series of cuts that effectively take away money from poorer women and give it to better-off men. The Treasury has a duty to pay due regard to the impact of its policies on women, but it is not doing so. Mary-Ann Stephenson and her colleagues at the […]

Geert Wilders isn’t turning people against immigration – he attracts those who already opposed it

Geert Wilders isn’t turning people against immigration – he attracts those who already opposed it

The key story in the 2017 Dutch election campaign so far has been the high levels of support for Geert Wilders’ PVV in opinion polls. But what explains the PVV’s ability to attract voters? James Dennison, Andrew Geddes and Teresa Talò argue that although Wilders’ success is frequently linked to hardening views on immigration, attitudes toward immigration […]

Book Review | Performing Politics: Media Interviews, Debates and Press Conferences by Geoffrey Craig

Book Review | Performing Politics: Media Interviews, Debates and Press Conferences by Geoffrey Craig

In Performing Politics: Media Interviews, Debates and Press Conferences, Geoffrey Craig examines media interactions between politicians and journalists as power struggles that have come to be seen as crucial in indicating the potential success and competence of political leaders. While the book understands politics through largely conventional terms that bypass the emergence of newer political […]

The Law Commission’s dangerous proposals would turn whistleblowers and journalists into ‘spies’

The Law Commission’s dangerous proposals would turn whistleblowers and journalists into ‘spies’

Suppose a journalist received information about the secret services from a whistleblower, but decided not to publish it – perhaps even because they thought it might damage national security? Under the Law Commission’s proposals to replace the Official Secrets Acts with a single Espionage Act, both the journalist and whistleblower could be jailed. And if they […]

Now they’re on a roll: how to get the missing millions onto the electoral register

Now they’re on a roll: how to get the missing millions onto the electoral register

Individual electoral registration has not been kind to students. Previously, they were automatically enrolled by their universities; now they are not, and many have fallen off the electoral roll as a result. But an amendment passed in the Lords last night would let them register at the same time as they enrolled at university. Toby […]

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