Next Left: Building New Communities. Notes from the Transatlantic Dialogue of Dialogues
“Next Left: Building New Communities. Notes from the Transatlantic Dialogue of Dialogues” captures the leading threads of the inspiring debate on the future of progressivism from three continents. Being an outcome of a high level workshop, which was held in April 2012 at Harvard Law School and which marks the establishment of cooperation between FEPS, Renner Institut and IGLP – Institute for Global Law and Policy of HLS, this book constitutes an important reading for all those seeking a progressive alternative worldwide.
The contributions gathered in this 5th volume of the Next Left book series mirror a new focus of the renowned FEPS research programme. The two year intellectual exchange with academics at the Watson Institute of Brown University (Providence, Rhode Island) and the new dialogue built upon that with the IGLP HLS, subsequently led to founding of the “Next Left – Dialogue of Dialogues”. This scholarly framed conversation reflects a common aspiration to contribute to framing a new, prevailing global narrative.
The volume encompasses 6 sections. The first one features prefaces of Professor David KENNEDY, Director of IGLP HLS and of Professor Michael KENNEDY of Watson Institute at Brown University – both of whom played a fundamentally important role in making this Dialogue possible. Their introductory remarks are followed by the introductory words of the Dialogue’s initial architects, Dr. Alfred GUSENBAUER (former Chancellor of Austria and Chair of the Next Left Research Programme) and Dr. Ricardo LAGOS (former President of Chile and Head of Chilean Fondación Democracia y Desarrollo). Their remarks frame the tone of the debate, offering diagnoses of the contemporary times and naming the principal challenges ahead. The next four chapters: A New Progressive Vision, A New Cosmopolitan Movement, A New Socio-Economic Paradigm, and A New Approach to Work and Employment include 14 articles by outstanding academics and experts from both sides of the Atlantic. What makes this collection especially recommendable is the exceptional quality of the contributions, which are anchored in the multilayer analytical framework. They feature interdisciplinary analyses and argue for innovative policy proposals from the local up to the global levels. Their strong embedding in the assessment of the crisis aftermath and the climate of the new social mobilisation exposes the vacuum that authors argue to use for a new intellectual construct and new quality politics.