10 February 2016
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The idea of holding a constitutional convention in the UK has been prominent ever since the Scottish independence referendum in September 2014, and the dominant proposal for the design of such a convention has been that it should be some kind of “citizens’ assembly”. While such assemblies have been held in a number of countries, there has until recently been no experience of them in the UK. That has changed, however, with the convening of two pilot citizens’ assemblies – based on slightly differing models – in Sheffield and Southampton in autumn 2015. The speakers – both members of the team that ran these assemblies – will present evidence on how well they functioned and discuss the degree to which engaging citizens in policy-making through such channels remains on politicians’ agendas.