Reform Scotland

Govt & constitution

Global Parliament of Mayors Annual Summit 2018 – Hannah Muirhead

At the end of last month, the Global Parliament of Mayors (GPM) held its third annual summit in Bristol. 80 mayors from around the world got together to discuss empowering cities as drivers of global change. It was the clear from the start that the pervading message of the three-day event was that nation states are …

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How to Nudge Citizens in Public Policy – Marcus Clarke

In the political landscape, Nudge Theory is a la mode. It is attractive to politicians and voters alike because it tries to change behavior using seemingly innocuous environmental changes and suggestion, taking its cues from behavioral psychology, and it does not compromise personal choice or individual liberty. It is becoming widely used across the world …

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Once upon a time… a story of community non engagement – Douglas Flett

Here is a real story. It is not a management fix, a leadership theory, nor political rhetoric. The story starts in a Business Association, far, far away – South Queensferry actually, a distant outpost from Edinburgh’s City Chambers. Queensferry is a delightful town with a beautiful High Street, albeit subject to excess traffic, noise and …

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Income Tax in Scotland – small difference? – Joanne Walker

Since 6 April 2016, income tax payers resident in Scotland (“Scottish taxpayers”) have been paying the Scottish Rate of Income Tax on their non-savings and non-dividend income.1 What this has meant in practice during the 2016/17 tax year, since the Scottish Rate of Income Tax was set at 10%, is that Scottish taxpayers have simply been …

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Towards a Better Environment for Policy-Making – John Sturrock

Contemporary politics is perceived by many to be polarising, positional, parochial, unnecessarily partisan, antagonistic and often unhelpfully adversarial. This can be attributed to a number of historical and behavioural factors, including the primacy of political parties, the often binary (yes/no, right/wrong) nature of political decision-making, relatively unsophisticated argument, over-emphasis on debate, and personalisation of issues …

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State of the State 2016: Brexit blues and sci-fi services – Angela Mitchell

The public sector is going through unprecedented change – a trend we’ve looked to capture in our annual State of the State reports, which have analysed the many ways this is happening: from digital transformation and people power, to the challenges of productivity and citizen engagement. This year, though, the rate of change went up several notches, …

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The Scottish Liberal Tradition – Dr Craig Smith

This is the first in a series of individual contributions to the publication, ‘Reforming Scotland’, which aims to set out a possible vision for Scotland’s future which can inform and influence the policy debate in the coming years. The contributions are by people from a range of different backgrounds and political perspectives who have looked …

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Money

Why Scotland Needs a Tax Cut – Alan Grant

A refreshing maturity has taken hold of Scottish politics lately. The emergence of debate on fiscal issues, where before there had been little but constitutional quibbling and point scoring, is exactly the dose of reality that Scottish politics desperately needs. The fact that Scottish politicians, commentators, and campaigners are talking about tax rates, bands, revenue …

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