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Half-Day Workshop at THE University of East London

7 March 2015. Venue: UEL / Stratford Campus

Convenors: Centre for the Study of States, Markets & People (School of Business & Law, University of East London); Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence (King’s College London); and the School of Politics & International Relations (SPIRE, Keele University)

The Labour Party, Europe and Civic Engagement: People’s Empowerment or Misplaced Idealism?

Jeremy Corbyn’s ideas of “Peoples Quantitative Easing” (PQE), progressive taxation, a new welfare state in the UK and changing the European Union from a neo-liberal monetarist construction to a civilised, multi-cultural and pro-labour space for good governance are gaining traction amongst informed practitioners of finance, politicians, academics and beyond. But can wider communities and constituencies be engaged, and how? The theme of “civic engagement” would appear to empower people, engaging civil society and local communities with pro-growth and pro-welfare initiatives across Britain and Europe. The workshop aims at exploring the new ideas of the Labour Party examining their appeal and whether or not they further civic engagement empowering the citizen, or whether it is just another form of misplaced idealism with no possibilities to deliver.

Themes to explore include:

What is the relationship between Labour Party and the EU in both historical and contemporary perspectives? What’s the Labour Party stance on the EU today? What are the key ideas and policies of the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn and how do they engage with civil society and the key constituencies of the youth and middle classes? Are Labour Party’s new policies an alternative to austerity and how do they impact on current taxation regimes and inflation? Do Labour Party’s new policies augment the distance between Britain the EU? How do local communities can benefit from the Labour Party and vice versa? What would be the likely impact of Labour Party’s policies on education and the University sector from their possible im plementation in the future? Can PQE (People’s Quantitative Easing) lead to a re-industrialisation of Britain and how does it fit with the overall economic policy of the “New Labour” (abolition of tuition fees, re-nationalisation of railways, new taxation regime etc.)?

Contact and further information: Ejike Udeogu, Lecturer in Economics, School of Business & Law, University of East London,

The convenors thank The Political Quarterly for its generous support

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