Are the old political parties dying?

Many commentators have observed that Britain enjoys, by European standards at least, a uniquely stable party-political system. In many other European countries, collapsing empires, social uprisings or world wars fuelled new parties and shifting popular allegiances. Britain, on the other hand, is notable for the longevity – and adaptability – of its established parties. But amid rising volatility, fragmentation and polarisation in the early twenty-first century, are we reaching a historic moment of change? Are new-style political ‘movements’ such as the Brexit Party or independent, local initiatives a promising way forward? Could we be on the brink of a new political landscape and, if so, how should we seek to shape it?

JONNY BALL
special projects writer, New Statesman

MIRANDA GREEN
journalist and commentator; deputy editor of opinion pages, Financial Times; former Liberal Democrat advisor

SHERELLE JACOBS
columnist and commissioning editor of comments, Daily Telegraph

JOHN MILLS
economist and entrepreneur; author, Left Behind: why voters deserted social democracy – and how to win them back

TOM SLATER
deputy editor, spiked; regular commentator on TV and radio; editor, Unsafe Space: the crisis of free speech on campus

CHAIR: JOEL COHEN
associate fellow, Academy of Ideas