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A social democratic narrative of British democracy

Beech, Matt


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Dr Matt Beech
Reader in Politics and Director of the Centre for British Politics


This article argues that social democracy as a political ideology has much to contribute to a narrative of British democracy. Democracy is the central tenet of social democracy and this distinguishes it from Marxist socialism. However, despite the Labour Party in Britain emanating from a rich tradition of democratic politics, Labour elites have often been reluctant democratisers. Firstly, this article evaluates the ideological role of democracy in social democracy; secondly, it weighs New Labour’s record on the democratisation agenda; and finally, it prescribes three democratic reforms to aspects of the British political system consistent with the aims of social democracy.


Beech, M. (2012). A social democratic narrative of British democracy. Policy studies : the journal of the Policy Studies Institute, 33(2), 133-144.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 25, 2011
Online Publication Date Nov 29, 2011
Publication Date Mar 1, 2012
Print ISSN 0144-2872
Electronic ISSN 1470-1006
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 33
Issue 2
Pages 133-144
Keywords Political Science and International Relations
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