In May 201 Soundings and the Open Left project at Demos brought together 50 people associated with different political perspectives to discuss the future of Labour. A number of papers were given and Jon Cruddas and David Miliband gave responses. The aim was to explore what common ground might exist and the prospects for a political axis around which to build cross-party political renewal.
There were some sharp differences of opinion. But there was also a shared agenda around pluralism and the importance of alliances in a time of political realignments. There was agreement about the need for the democratic reform of the party and for developing community and workplace organising. The day itself was a demonstration of the kind of non-factional debate and inquiry people wanted for the future. Pressing issues included the need for Labour to develop a new political economy and a new model of a social and democratic state. It was also generally accepted that Labour has to evolve a more ethical and emotional language for its politics, reviving its traditions to become once again the party of association and mutualism.
This e-book offers a series of short essays from participants that we hope broadly reflects the debate and that offers some of the groundwork for developing a wider discussion about Labour’s future. Published jointly by Soundings and Open Left at Demos
Contributors: Philip Collins, Sally Davison, Jeremy Gilbert, Stuart Hall, David Lammy, Neal Lawson, Doreen Massey, Anthony Painter, James Purnell, Michael Rustin, Jonathan Rutherford, Marc Stears, Allegra Stratton, Heather Wakefield, Stuart White