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This week’s editors

“Francesc”

Francesc Badia i Dalmases is Editor and Director of democraciaAbierta.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Participation and foresight: putting people at the heart of the future

The demise of the Commission at the stroke of a Minister’s pen demonstrated the fragility of such bodies. So Welsh Government set out to incorporate the Commission’s function within legislation.

Mind your language

As Marine Le Pen calls on French citizens to renounce dual citizenship in France’s presidential election campaign, bilingual school education is the site of another battle for diversity in Wales.

Towards better broadcasting in Wales

Public service broadcasting in Wales is on a knife-edge and there are loud demands for reform. The response will cast light on whether Wales is genuinely seen as a full partner within the UK.

Is Corbyn too pally with tyrants and other pariahs?

Why is it so hard for the left, both pro and anti-Corbyn, to resist the logic of "my enemies' enemies are my friends"? Can we learn to cast a plague on the houses of enemies of progress whoever they are?

The Labour Party's real challenge is finding a radical voice

Will the UK Labour Party ever really, vocally resist Conservative policies? They should be engaging young voters on global social inequality.

Demand homes not jails: queer homelessness is being criminalized

Cities globally are starting to criminalize homelessness: banning begging and making free food provision illegal. I work within LGBTQ communities, whose multiple oppressions lead to a high level of homelessness. When I see police disrupting rough sleepers, I remember their life stories.

Benefits Street: how austerity transformed makeover TV

Benefits Street was born from coalition government rhetoric: no one should receive 'anything for nothing'. The failure to transform is always personal. Nobody should be helped.

We need to talk about the UK media war on women

While Dylan Farrow's child abuse allegations against Woody Allen hold the headlines, it is time for journalists to realise that sexual violence is not about evil individuals, Asian grooming gangs, or 1970s BBC culture.

British charities could lose the right to challenge bad laws

Following the suicide of two 17-year olds, campaigners forced a review of the law covering treatment of children in police custody.  Such challenges could become impossible if Ministry of Justice proposals are pushed through

What Thatcher did for Wales

Which politician did most to secure devolution for Wales? Margaret Thatcher. The miners’ strike was the beginning of an era that proved time and again Welsh difference from Britain and alienation from the English.

Wales is leading the debate on a federal UK

John Osmond reflects on how far Wales has come in the last 15 years, as he steps down after a long career as head of the Institute of Welsh Affairs. The history demonstrates the unstoppable dynamic built into the devolution process. Now Wales is at the forefront of thinking on the possible future of a ‘Britannic federation’.

Single nation, double logic: Ed Miliband and the problem with British multiculturalism

British identity is open and dynamic; those of the nations narrow and bigoted. So goes the 'One Nation' narrative, a logic of dominance and hypocrisy.

After the fall: Hobsbawm from the north

The great reach of the historian Eric Hobsbawm found its limit at the borders of multinational Britain, says Christopher Harvie.

The end of the 'Great British Summer'

'The Great British Summer' of 2012 is well and truly over. OurKingdom takes a rollercoaster journey back through the season to close its series.

The most powerful Labour politician in Britain? Carwyn Jones in the spotlight

While the Labour party goes mad for Miliband’s speech, the First Minister of Wales is leading a nation. Time for those outside of Wales to pay close attention to the most senior elected Labour politician in the UK.

Feeling British after the Olympics

The Olympics have revealed once again that the British are fascinated with themselves and how they feel about who they are, now that they are a multicultural country that is no longer the centre of an Empire. Here we see some of the shifting responses detailed in polling responses run by the new think tank, British Future. 

The ‘Great British Summer’, or Last of the British Summer Wine?

The festivities around the London Olympics and Diamond Jubilee will paint a picture of a stable, timeless (simultaneously modern) Great Britain. But the Anglo-Britishness it appeals to is far from the present-day reality of contested identity and authority, in which England is preparing to speak.

A written constitution for Wales?

The First Minister of Wales has called for a written constitution that would redefine the relationship between the UK nations.

It's a Leanne-slide! Plaid Cymru's new leader and her radical plans for Wales

Leanne Wood, the newly elected leader of Welsh nationalist party Plaid Cymru, brings with her a truly radical agenda. What was behind her unexpected victory, and will she bring her unruly party in line behind her key goals of socialism and independence for Wales?

Cameron and the future of the Union: a forum

The Prime Minister has conceded that there will be a Scottish independence referendum and argued the case for the Union on these terms. This is a historic moment for Britain. openDemocracy asks its readers for their response in an open forum on the future of the Union.

Same-sex marriage and the Church of England: an argument for disestablishment

A consultation has been launched on allowing civil partnerships to be registered on religious premises in England and Wales. Some have claimed the Church of England should be exempt - because it is established. What would this special treatment mean for religious freedom and equality?

England and the Guardian's 'Disunited Kingdom'

The British media are now defensively acknowledging a post-imperial constitutional threat they have been silencing for decades.

Mums in prison

Half of the women incarcerated in England and Wales have children. We know the devastating effect on kids with mothers in prison - so what can be done about it?

UK needs a Convention for a renewed federal union: an argument from Wales

Welsh Assembly Member David Melding argues that ‘Little Britain’, as a truncated union of England and Wales, would be unlikely to survive

The Death of Positive Unionism: 10 reasons why there will be a single Scots referendum vote

To hold two referendums on Scottish independence would be without grounding or precedent, and dangerous for politics in Scotland and the UK. Westminster must drop this idea if they are to set forth a positive vision of the Union

Festival of Britain 2011: microcosm of a troubled Union

As Scotland faces the prospect of a vote on independence, the Festival of Britain 2011 is underway in central London. Designed to celebrate the anniversary of the 1951 exhibition and capture the spirit of modern Britain, the festival instead reveals a Union in crisis and denial

Conflicting fantasies of Scottish independence - and building a reality

Scottish independence has long been a political fantasy. Before the elections, the SNP allowed for conflicting visions of an independent future. Now, whatever the referendum result, we must listen and engage with each-other's hopes for Scotland

How do we talk about Scotland?

How should we talk about Scotland and the coming referendum on independence? A non-partisan debate is needed that includes all the nations, acknowledges the English question, and exists outside of the Westminster circle. But how will this be achieved?

Welsh Labour must seek another Plaid coalition

Today, Welsh Labour reached the barrier to secure an Assembly majority, but failed to cross over. Will leader Carwyn Jones choose to govern alone without a clear mandate? It's far more likely that the party will seek a coalition with Plaid Cymru

The Welsh Assembly elections will be a referendum on the Coalition... Labour will win

Tomorrow, Wales goes to the polls in the fourth Assembly elections. Daran Hill, an editor at WalesHome.org, gives a picture of the electoral landscape. He predicts a Labour win, which will see Carwyn Jones become the most powerful Labour politician in the UK

The interdependency of progressive politics and devolution in the UK

Until we take a cold, hard look at England and its place in the world, social democracy will continue to languish behind Offa’s Dyke and Hadrian’s Wall Social democracy can't be the territory to Scotland and Wales. British social democracy must go hand in hand with devolution

Budget 2011: Reactions across the nations

Left Foot Forward’s devolution correspondent Ed Jacobs assesses reaction to Britain's 2011 budget in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

If you're English, you're white - that's according to the 'National' Census

Those filling in the 2011 National Census in England and Wales are not offered the option of including 'English' or 'Welsh' as part of their ethnic-group identity. In other words, according to 'British' officialdom, 'English' and 'Welsh' are white-only terms.

Well done Wales, hello English media!

I'm relieved that Wales voted 'yes' to the increase in powers for its Assembly. The question of independence is beside the point; this is about Wales building its own institutions and creating a national space. England should go further than congratulating the Welsh; we should start learning some lessons.

The early days of a better nation? Wales will decide today

“Work as if you live in the early days of a better nation,” was how the Scottish writer Alasdair Gray advised his fellow citizens. It is an apt quotation for us in Wales as we go to the polls in today’s referendum.
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