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Video: Zaid Al-Ali - Constitutional Reform in the Age of Arab Revolutions: Overcoming the Legacy of Totalitarianism

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The dictators who ruled over the Arab region for decades constructed complex systems of repression but also inculcated specific cultural values in the general population. Local populations were encouraged to adopt various opinions about their character and their society, all of which were ultimately designed to encourage them to willingly surrender their rights and system of government in favor of a single individual who would remain unaccountable for his actions. Although many of the dictators have now been consigned to history, the decades of propaganda that they orchestrated have had a marked impact on society, to the extent that even debates surrounding constitutional reform have been impacted. Each of the countries that has embarked on a reform process since 2011 has had to deal with this legacy, some successfully, others less so. This presentation will explore how the legacy of totalitarianism impacts constitutional reform in each of the countries that has been engaging in constitutional reform since 2011.

Press Release: The SNP response on keeping the pound

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Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s deputy first minister will be in London today to give a lecture on 'Scotland's Future: the case for an independent Scotland' before  students and guests of UCL’s School of Public Policy.

Meg Russell's new book on the House of Lords has been shortlisted for Practical Politics Book of the Year

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Lords book cover - png file

Meg Russell's book 'The Contemporary House of Lords: Westminster Bicameralism Revived' has been shortlisted in the Practical Politics Book of the Year category at the Political Book Awards 2014.

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Understanding the resurgence of English national identity

Thu, 18 Dec 2014 11:00:30 +0000

On 14 December Michael Kenny, Professor of Politics at Queen Mary, spoke at a Unit seminar on English nationhood and the current debate around the English Question in British politics. Sally Symington reports on the event. Michael Kenny’s talk ‘Understanding the Resurgence of English National Identity’ placed the current policy debate about the English Question […]

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New Release of Constitute, now including the UK’s written “constitution”

Mon, 15 Dec 2014 16:30:52 +0000

The Constitution Unit is pleased to announce that a new version of Constitute is now available online. The new version has many new features and includes a number of new constitutions, including that of the UK. This will provide a tool for comparing extant UK constitutional laws with constitutional texts from across the globe.  Back in September […]

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Redrawing the boundaries: Contentious but crucial to fair elections

Fri, 12 Dec 2014 10:00:56 +0000

Patrick Tomison considers evidence submitted to the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee inquiry which is assessing where the challenges lie when it comes to redrawing electoral boundaries in the UK. On 16 February 2011, the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act received Royal Assent. It sought to pursue the dual aim of reducing perceived over-representation […]

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