Scotland the Brave?

Scotland the Brave?


Twenty Years of Change and the Future of the Nation

Gerry Hassan & Simon Barrow

ISBN: 9781913025021

Binding: paperback

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Back cover text:

Politics took a decisive turn twenty years ago with the birth of the modern Scottish Parliament. People in Scotland want to ‘make a difference’ and build a better future. Scotland the Brave? offers both an acute assessment of where we are today and a route map to the future.

Editors Gerry Hassan and Simon Barrow have brought together an impressive array of Scottish and international voices to cover concerns including the economy, environment, social policy, beliefs, human rights, media and culture.

After two decades of significant change, the contributors describes how wealth is created and distributed in Scotland; ways of addressing social divisions and inequality; the needs to respond to the climate emergency, as well as considering challenges to democracy.

This book provides powerful, non-partisan visions for the future that indicates how we can rise to challenges of our times and truly become ‘Scotland the Brave’.


the twentieth anniversary of the Scottish Parliament offers the opportunity to assess a Scotland beyond the narrow politics of devolution. In these pages we therefore address a wider canvas. This includes what has changed and what has not changed over this devolution era; understanding where, and how far, we have come, and what the contours and challenges of the future might look like. Gerry Hassan & Simon Barrow

Some people have a dream; I have a nightmare. It is to find myself locked in a dark, airless nursery cupboard, somewhere in the south of England, with Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Theresa May and Paul Dacre, former editor of the Daily Mail. Neal Ascherson

If the choice between shooting oneself in the head or in the foot is the answer to Britain’s long-term problems, then we can sure that the wrong question is being asked. Over the past three years it has become ever clearer that Brexit is not about its ostensible subject: Britain’s relationship with the EU. The very word Brexit contains a literally unspoken truth. It does not include or even allude to Europe. It is British exit that is the point, not what it is exiting from. The tautologous slogan ‘Leave Means Leave’ is similarly (if unintentionally) honest: the meaning is in the leaving, not in what is being left or how. Fintan O’Toole

Scotland has become an international reference point for gender equality policy and for progressive equality policy in the twenty years of devolution. Angela O’Hagan & Talat Yaqoob

Scotland is currently in the grip of a child and adolescent mental health crisis, with frightening implications not only for the children concerned but for the nation as a whole… Scotland urgently needs coherent, well-funded policy-making (not just policy-writing) for this age range. Sue Palmer

the rest of the world now look to us as a source of innovation and inspiration and it may be that our influence can go beyond our own shores. Gerry McCartney

With 10,000 permanent Airbnb’s in Edinburgh, and now over 20 per cent of its housing privately rented, should we be surprised that the city has the largest number of people residing in temporary accommodation, who also stay there for the longest periods. A housing policy that encourages new mid-market rental accommodation and celebrity homeless sleep-outs can never hope to address the real causes of that city’s housing crisis. Douglas Robertson


Mairi McFayden

Neil McInroy

Fergus McNeill

Nasar Meer

Anne Mullin

Andrew W Neal

Jemma Neville

Angela O’Hagan

Fintan O’Toole

Lesley Orr

Sue Palmer

Douglas Robertson

Kirstein Rummery

Alan Sinclair

Mike Small

Jim Spence

Catriona Stewart

Andy Summers

Laura Waddell

William Walker

Andy Wightman

Ruth Wushart

Talat Yaqoob

Neal Ascherson

Jude Barber

John Bone

Miriam Brett

Craig Dalzell

Gillian Easson

Anna Fowlie

Douglas Fraser

Katie Gallogy-Swan

David Goldblatt

Richard Holloway

Lucy Hunter Blackburn

Blair Jenkins

Laura Jones

George Kerevan

Caitlin Logan

Malcolm Maclean

Brian Mark Evans

Michael Marra

Gerry McCartney

Karyn McCluskey

Jim McCormick

James McEnaney