David Bailey, Professor – Aston Business School
If a post-Brexit/Covid consensus exists, it is for more devolution and dealing with the UK’s wide regional inequalities. This is the goal of the Conservatives’ flagship ‘levelling up’ programme. And now, Labour has put forward its own plans with its recent report A New Britain: Renewing our Democracy and Rebuilding our Economy.
Labour calls for more local control, arguing decisions need to be taken ‘as close as meaningfully and practicably possible to the people affected by them’ so as to bring ‘power and opportunity closer to each citizen’. This is seen as critical to reviving local economies and democracy.
Labour aims to put this on a constitutional footing, where the political, administrative, and financial autonomy of local government would be respected by central government. This would mitigate attempts by any future central government to clawba...