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Easter reading from Policy Network

05 April 2012
Easter reading from Policy Network

It is a crucial time for the future of social democracy and the European Union, both in the UK and across the continent.

The challenge is as much intellectual as it is political: key pillars of the political and economic models of the last decades look increasingly exhausted. There is a pressing need for new ideas.

Policy Network has contributed to this process of critical thinking and reflection with a number of publications in recent months. 

The recently launched edited volume After the Third Way: The Future of European Social Democracy, edited by Olaf Cramme and Patrick Diamond, brings together political experts to carve out new doctrines, new concepts and new interpretations on which a credible centre-left politics can be built and from which new ideas can emerge.

It follows a series of substantial papers on the future of centre-left politics, which includes Southern Discomfort Again, In the Black Labour and Cameron’s Trap, that encourage debate within the Labour Party over the necessary economic and political strategy required to give the centre-left new purpose and vision.

Last month Patrick Diamond and Michael Kenny contended in The next British centre-left that a new coalition of ideas is required in British politics - a marriage of social democracy and social liberalism - to address the big questions of the age on capitalism, the state, the constitution, relations with the European Union, and the future of the United Kingdom.

Whilst Peter Taylor-Gooby in A Left Trilemma tackles the public policy difficulties that go a long way to explain why it is so hard for the left to produce a coherent and progressive response to a crisis where market neoliberalism has so obviously failed.

In March Policy Network also published The future of economic governance in the EU – And where does this leave Britain?, which intended to take stock of the changing institutional and political landscape in the EU, and provided a platform for 10 high-level contributions that help frame the economic debate.

Finally, the Easter break provides an opportunity to reflect on the specific situations affecting centre-left parties across the globe in March's edition of the acclaimed State of the Left.

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