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This week's editor

“Phoebe

Phoebe Braithwaite is openDemocracy’s submissions editor.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Virtue-signalling as a route to social status: instances from the semi-periphery

Two Budapest-based activists give a vivid account of the ideological constraints they are working under, not helped by certain fashionable forms of ‘intersectionality’.

From civil rights to the occupy movement: talking across issues in independent media

Interest in the dynamics of collaboration, alliance-building, coordination, and networking point to intersectionalities in participants, issues, and tactics that movements have always faced. DemocracyNow! is a good example.

French tragedy or farce - 2: A ‘republican front’ against Marine Le Pen?

The truth is that the former economy minister has no solid constituency backing him, and no real popularity.

Citizens’ participation key to an inclusive and sustainable future

Collective action at all levels and balanced multi-stakeholder participation are prerequisites for generating more sustainable solutions.

Not “one of us”: the French presidential elections

So, this new situation which looked simple with a choice between two different types of societies, has to face once again a bitter resistance from entrenched political interests from all sides.

Technology, skills and future jobs

Facing up to the coming technology upheavals, what might a next ‘Golden Age’ look like and what are the enablers that need to be put in place to deliver on that promise?

Foresight in an ageing world

With social cohesion a cultural priority, Israel has long been a leader in ensuring that its citizens are able to remain active within their communities as they age.

The land of a thousand dances

In which the man from New Orleans remembers some prelapsarian years reflected in the music of the times, "when “shaking your moneymaker” did not suggest manipulating one’s PAC"

“You black bastard” Offensive, friendly banter, somewhere in between or both?

“There is no justification for racial discrimination, in theory or in practice, anywhere” and certainly not in Britain or Australia.

Refugee crisis and Central and Eastern Europe: what solidarity do we need?

There is a disconnect between law and practice whereby the EU is continually reforming the Common European Asylum System (CEAS) but seems incapable of implementing it.

The masses have spoken, but not all hope is lost, for Turkey’s democracy

This inherent ability to cancel itself out is democracy’s paradox:  to “sow the seeds of its own destruction”, succumbing to the electoral will of the majority.

Novas ideias precisam de edifícios antigos

A Criatividade é um recurso renovável, o Património não. Potenciar a criatividade dos cidadãos é um processo de empoderamento, mas não devemos esquecer que novas ideias precisam de edifícios antigos. Entrevista English

Three humanitarian proposals

"The people we rescue are increasingly reporting having been exploited, abused, beaten, kidnapped for ransom or tortured along the journey from their country of origin to the Libyan coast."

French tragedy or farce: the 2017 presidential election – 1

Why Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s late surge? Are we about to see de Gaulle's fifth republic replaced by a sixth? And in 2017, what does a Citizens' Revolution look like?

Migration policies: effective ways to address smuggling

The European Council should review progress on the overall approach at its meetings in March and in June 2017, on the basis of a report from the Maltese EU Presidency.

Living on the Tour

“For it is written, In the scruffy shall ye find the rewards of eternal bliss!" and other useful Pasqual exclamations from New Orleans when you have become a fixture in the global tourism industry

‘Prevent’, free speech and antisemitism

As a talking point for debate it might be productive. The problem arises from the government of the United Kingdom ‘adopting’ IHRA’s definition of antisemitism in a quasi-official manner.

Gertrude Bell: the tragedy of her letters from Baghdad

A remarkable new documentary assembled from Gertrude Bell's letters read over archive footage makes us wish for what might have been

Turkey's 'special refugees'

In Turkey's story, the western gaze is searching for new victims. Yes, I fled Turkey with my three year old daughter, but am I that victim?

Three forays into ideology in the age of post-truth politics

Attempts to wrestle with fake news and post-truth lack a concept of ideology to tell us not only what is believed, but why, and suggest how to move on.

Dangerous road to divisive places

A review of The Road to Somewhere. The Populist Revolt and the Future of Politics by David Goodhart, London (2017).

The passive revolution of Islamists in Turkey

It is sometimes said that theories are fishing nets in which to catch the truth. Let us apply Gramsci’s net to some daily debates taking place in Turkey.

Sliding towards autocracy

A defining characteristic of this populist form of autocracy is the rejection of diversity and the attack on democratic institutions. Orbán is succeeding in both.

Creativity and heritage: the great urban partnership

Heritage is where we come from. Creativity is the energy that shapes what we can become. The question is how to combine the two. Português  

Criatividade e Património: a Parceria Urbana Estratégica

O Património dá-nos as raízes que nos sustentam e a Criatividade fornece a energia para construir aquilo em que nos podemos tornar. A questão é como combinar os dois. English

Love in a time of fear: an interview with Dashni Morad

‘The Shakira of Kurdistan’ discusses feminism, Kurdish unity, and healing the scars of war.

Why Facebook’s fake news filter won’t work

A range of solutions  –  including stronger independent media organisations  –  is going to be needed.

Brexit is racist

We are facing the biggest, most overarching, racist attack on immigration in generations. There is a void in politics. We must fight to win.

Exploring two Alternatives

openDemocracy meets up with Denmark’s fastest-growing political party, Alternativet, and The Alternative UK, who inspired by them, have just launched their own ‘friendly revolution’. Interview.

Ireland, Brexit and our Disunited Kingdom

Will Brexit ultimately result in a united federal Ireland in a confederation with Scotland, in the EU – with England and Wales outside it?

We've triggered Article 50. Is this such a tragedy for Europe?

It is now possible that new governments in France and Germany will respond to civil society pressure and do what is needed to change the EU, without being blocked by Britain.

Brexit and France: a divorce by mutual consent?

Every country, just like any individual, has to live with its own mess and pay the price for it.

Subverting neoliberal slavery: migrant struggles against labour exploitation in Italy

We are witnessing cumulative processes of politicization – struggles and organization involving migrant workers and activists setting out to build awareness locally, and link up globally.     

What causes the populist infection? How can it be cured?

In all countries, established political parties have the dangerous propensity to counter this electoral wave of populism by adopting the issues and language used by them.

Postscript to a letter to extremists

We can defeat extremism by building something beautiful together.

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