Building sub-national government

Can the centre hold? Devolution in England is gathering pace

Can the centre hold? Devolution in England is gathering pace

The new metro-mayors are settling into their jobs. But will they lead to longer-term change in relationships between central and local government? Mark Sandford (House of Commons Library), Sarah Ayres (University of Bristol) and Matthew Flinders (University of Sheffield) argue that, although not radical, England’s devolution deals may contain the seeds of change. Similar PostsWho’s going to hold the new metro […]

Book review | Popular Democracy: The Paradox of Participation, by Gianpaolo Baiocchi & Ernesto Ganuza

Book review | Popular Democracy: The Paradox of Participation, by Gianpaolo Baiocchi & Ernesto Ganuza

In Popular Democracy: The Paradox of Participation, Gianpaolo Baiocchi and Ernesto Ganuza examine contemporary forms of participatory governance by tracing the origins and development of participatory budgeting (PB) from its roots in Porto Alegre, Brazil, to its adoption in two cases, Cordoba, Spain and Chicago, USA. While acknowledging that PB has been seen as being too easily co-opted by neoliberalism, the […]

Audit 2017: How democratic are the institutions of devolved government in Northern Ireland?

Audit 2017: How democratic are the institutions of devolved government in Northern Ireland?

Devolved government in Northern Ireland centres around unique institutions, a power-sharing Executive with ministers chosen on a proportional basis, answering to an Assembly elected using PR. It was designed to overcome the intercommunal strife that has characterised Northern Ireland public life: the challenges it has faced have been particularly acute, and its record has, inevitably, […]

How evangelical religion contributed to peace in Northern Ireland

How evangelical religion contributed to peace in Northern Ireland

ECONI – an evangelical Protestant organisation – played a key role in establishing peace in Northern Ireland. Gladys Ganiel explains how its effectiveness rests in part on its credibility: ECONI’s evangelical identity provided it with a legitimacy that some ecumenical peace-building organisations lacked. Similar PostsThe DUP’s extremist links make it unfit to join a Conservative […]

The 21st century councillor: neglected, put-upon – and deserving of better

The 21st century councillor: neglected, put-upon – and deserving of better

Little attention has been paid to the work of councillors. Discussion around the topic is often based on the assumed shortcomings of the position. But such preconceptions prevent support from being offered to councillors, at a time when austerity governance makes their work more complex, write Neil Barnett, Steven Griggs and David Howarth. Similar PostsAusterity is in serious danger […]

Audit 2017: How democratic is local government in Wales?

Audit 2017: How democratic is local government in Wales?

Within Wales, the local councils provide the main focus for democratic politics below the devolved government in Cardiff, and organise the provision of most local services. As part of our 2017 Audit of UK Democracy, James Downe looks at how well they fulfil their roles. Similar PostsAudit 2017: How democratic is local government in Northern Ireland?Audit […]

Audit 2017: How democratic is local government in England?

Audit 2017: How democratic is local government in England?

England (outside Greater London) is one of the largest areas in the liberal democratic world that still lack any form of regional governance. Here, local authorities are the only other tier of elected government and they play a key role in the democratic life of cities, towns and regions. As part of the 2017 Audit of […]

Audit 2017: How democratically organised and effective are the London boroughs in serving the capital’s population?

Audit 2017: How democratically organised and effective are the London boroughs in serving the capital’s population?

Within London the 32 London boroughs undertake most local services provision and planning, and play a major role in shaping the capital’s evolution. As part of our 2017 Audit of UK Democracy, Tony Travers looks at how well they fulfil their roles. Similar PostsThe Tower Hamlets affair is a sad indictment of British local democracyThe PwC […]

Tilting at linguistic windmills: a million Welsh speakers

Tilting at linguistic windmills: a million Welsh speakers

The target of creating one million Welsh speakers in Wales by 2050 announced by the Welsh Government as the central goal of its Welsh Language Strategy (‘Cymraeg 2050. A million Welsh speakers’) has captured the headlines: and why should it not? After all, that would mean effectively doubling the number of Welsh speakers. It would […]

Audit 2017: How democratic is the overall set-up of devolved government within the UK?

Audit 2017: How democratic is the overall set-up of devolved government within the UK?

Devolution in the UK encompasses a range of quite different solutions in three countries (Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland), plus lesser delegations of powers to London and some English cities. Designed to meet specific demands for national or regional control and to bring government closer to citizens, there are important issues around the stability and […]

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