Context and some theoretical considerations
This chapter explains how and why the Labour Party under Ed Miliband tried to use the global financial crisis as a trigger to recreate a social democratic moment. In order to do so, this chapter explains the political significance of the global financial crisis and how different political parties sought to use it for their own purposes ideological. Next, the chapter analyses the role of ideas in politics and explains the analytical framework that will be used to ascertain whether Ed Miliband was successful in his task of renewing social democracy. In particular, it will explain how discursive institutionalism and historical institutionalism offer appropriate heuristic devices to analyse the interplay between the ideas and the ideational, political and institutional constraints that informed and constrained the development of Labour’s political programme.
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