Posts tagged Europe
Two days in Derry

Since the Good Friday Agreement was signed, peace has been maintained in Northern Ireland. But now, after twenty years of progress, Brexit has got people thinking and talking about the border again. This August I spent two days in Derry watching the Bogside Republican Youth building a bonfire. It was a stark reminder that while the majority of people value peace; there are those who would see a return to conflict.

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What can we learn from the Swiss?

In a referendum in 2014, Switzerland voted to introduce immigration quotas by the slimmest of majorities threatening the countries relationship with the EU. After two years of negotiation, in 2016, the Swiss parliament chose to compromise and introduced a series of soft measures in order to maintain trading arrangements. Given the parallels with Brexit, I ask here what we, in the UK, can learn from recent events there.

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What is populism?

In this period of political instability and Trump leading the US, the words ‘populist’ and ‘populism’, are increasingly used. But what actually is populism and why is it bad for democracy? Our recent trip to Italy, where we came across the Five Star Movement, got me wondering. How do you tell apart a progressive political movement, which pledges to reform policy and overhaul the political system for the benefit of the people, and a populist?

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