PinterestGoogle+

This year is the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta. Following the independence referendum in Scotland, calls for a constitutional convention are widespread and growing. The Oxford University Politics Blog, together with OurKingdom, IPPR and the Department of Politics at the University of Southampton, are hosting the Great Charter Convention – an open, public debate on where arbitrary power lies in the UK today and how we should contest and contain it. What would a new Magna Carta say, and what could a new constitutional settlement for Britain look like?

The UK needs a framework for federalisation. Here’s one suggestion for how this could work. The Problem Britain is on the brink of a catastrophe of which the left seems to be frighteningly unconcerned and unaware. If the Conservatives succeed in implementing English-only days at Westminster, it is likely to transform both Scotland and the rest of the UK into what will in effect be neoliberal dictatorships. Scotland will lose the ability to vote down proposals that would lead to steep cuts in its budget via Barnett consequentials if key services are privatised south of the border. English voters who …

Over the past couple of weeks, as the referendum campaign reached its climax in Scotland, a concept has suddenly started springing up all over the place in English political debate: the idea of a constitutional convention. (The Welsh National Assembly called for UK-wide constitutional convention in 2012.) In a letter to The Times on September 10, 19 experts on UK democracy set the proposal out as follows: ‘It is time for a UK-wide constitutional convention, on the lines of recent conventions in Ireland and Iceland, that gives citizens a say in shaping the future. Such a process needs the support of all the political parties, but …