It is perhaps appropriate that 2018, being Reform Scotland’s 10th birthday, has been a year of change. In April I took over as Director, with ambitious plans to build on the great work of my predecessors and grow our think tank over the next few years into a new and more substantial proposition. Scotland’s political culture and structures, and its policy debate, deserve a powerhouse think tank, and I want Reform Scotland to fulfil that role.
We have made significant progress in the intervening months – we have begun to expand our team, intensify our research work, and build a regular and stimulating programme of events. This has been possible thanks to the increased generosity of our funders, the heightened engagement of our advisory board, and the efforts of our friends and contributors, old and new. We are grateful to you all, and hope you will continue to stand by our side as we move on and up.
Next year, 2019, is an important one for us. We intend to grow further, to refresh our look and brand, and as the 2021 Holyrood election draws nearer and the parties begin to put their manifestos together, to facilitate and shape the policy discussion. Our watchwords – the principles that will underline our thinking and for which we will argue – are prosperity, opportunity, compassion and courage. The last of these, especially, is something Scottish politics could do with more of. And we will, of course, fiercely protect Reform Scotland’s independence.
Since launching our Melting Pot blog back in July 2015, it has become customary to end the year by bringing together 12 months of articles in one place. The views expressed are those of the authors and not Reform Scotland. You’ll see on the list a diverse range of topics, covering criminal justice, the environment, education and more. We’re looking forward to making Melting Pot an even more vital hive of ideas in the New Year.
It remains for me to thank you all for your continued support. We genuinely couldn’t do it without you. There is so much still to do and I look forward to seeing you in 2019.