Social Democracy and its Future

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Next Friday, the School of Government and Society will host what is sure to be a fascinating roundtable discussion on the future of social democracy, with Labour Party grandee Roy Hattersley and several other prominent academics and commentators.

The publication of Roy Hattersley and Kevin Hickson’s article `In praise of social democracy’ in Political Quarterly at the end of 2011 drew a trenchant response from former Labour Foreign Secretary David Miliband in The New Statesman. According to Miliband, the `reassurance’ approach of Hattersley and Hickson was ill suited to the challenges facing contemporary social democratic parties. Now, he argued, was the time for ‘restless rethinking not reassurance’.

Given the interest in this debate Political Quarterly has sponsored a number of roundtable sessions based on the Hattersley/Hickson article at the House of Lords and at the Universities of Liverpool and Hull. In this concluding event at the University of Birmingham organised by Robert Page (School of Social Policy) and Emma Foster (School of Government and Society) in association with Emma Anderson at Political Quarterly the focus will be on Social Democracy and Its Future.

The speakers at this event will be:

  • Lord Roy Hattersley (Labour MP for Birmingham Sparkbrook from 1964 to 1997 and Deputy Leader of the Labour Party from 1983-92)
  • Patrick Diamond (Senior Research Fellow, Policy Network and former advisor to Tony Blair)
  • Kevin Hickson (Senior Lecturer in Politics, University of Liverpool)
  • Michael Kenny (Professor of Politics, Queen Mary, London)
  • Katrine Kielos (leader writer for the social democratic daily newspaper Aftonbladet, Sweden)
  • Chair: Robert Page (Reader in Democratic Socialism and Social Policy, University of Birmingham)

The event will be held in the Main Lecture Theatre (G15), on the ground floor of Muirhead Tower, (Building R21 on the Edgbaston Campus Map). The event is open to all and no registration is required.

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