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Since 2004 I have been published in a wide range of mainstream newspapers, magazines, journals and blogs. From 2010 onwards I began to chart the emergence of populism as a dominant trend in politics. More recently I was one of the first to establish the increasingly prominent narrative around the city-town divide in UK politics.



A selection of my published work is below.




Take Back the High Street: putting communities in charge of their own town centres (Power to Change, 2019)


The Great Yearning: how can we build a more connected politics? (Open Democracy, 2019)

Lobbying for Good: how Business Action Groups can help save capitalism (Global Future, 2019)

Theresa May’s speech was stone-cold populist – and that threatens us all (Global Future, 2019)


Labour’s contructive ambiguity on Brexit is on its last legs (Huffington Post, 2019)

Don’t sell off the arches, Network Rail. It will kill off diverse business dreams (The Guardian, 2018)


Britain’s generational apartheid (Unherd, 2018)

Cities and Towns: the 2017 General Election and the social divisions of place (w/ Will Jennings, Rachel Laurence and Adrian Bua, New Economics Foundation, 2017)


Forward, not back: real energy for change can be found in communities, not manifestos (New Economics Foundation, 2017)


Grasping the political opportunity in automation (Nesta Long+Short, 2016)

Wake up to the political reality. Brexit’s blade is splitting Labour in two (New Statesman, 2016)

Disappointed? That’s a sign you’re doing democracy (Democratic Audit, 2016)

The Labour leadership battle is a game of dangerously personal politics (New Statesman, 2016)

Don’t laugh, industrial strategy can make the spirit soar (Nesta Long+Short, 2016)

The UK, the EU, Labour: all are fragile, all are worth preserving (Labour Uncut, 2016)

Forget the caricature – US democracy is alive and kicking (New Statesman, 2016)

On ‘Bregret’: Political Engagement After the Referendum (Huffington Post, 2016)



It’s Good to Talk: Doing Referendums Differently after the EU Vote (Electoral Reform Society, 2016)

Open Up: the future of the political party (w/ Jess Garland, Electoral Reform Society, 2014)


What’s an Elite To Do? The Threat of Populism from Left, Right and Centre (Political Quarterly, 2013)

Iraq made me believe in politics (Prospect, 2013)

“Political Transformations in Uncertain Times”, in Challenges for Europe in the world, 2030 (Ashgate, 2013)

Towards One Nation: the Labour case for local electoral reform (w/ Lewis Baston, Electoral Reform Society, 2013)

Chaplin, Grillo and the spectre of centrist populism (King’s Review, 2013)

Bernard Crick’s In Defence of Politics: A critical analysis (Mouseion/Macat, 2013)

Max Weber’s Politics as a Vocation: A critical analysis (Mouseion/Macat, 2013)

European anti-politics: reading the runes in France and Germany (New Statesman, 2012)

Anti-politics, and what the left can do about it (Renewal, 2012)

The Grillo Threat: why we should all worry about liberal populism (Huffington Post, 2012)

Call off the hounds: the virulent strain of anti-politics in British journalism is becoming a serious problem (LSE Politics, 2012)

In Defence of Select Committees (LSE Politics, 2012)

Rediscovering Labour’s soul (Renewal, 2010)

Book reviews for The Spectator (2004-2009)




Contact: will@willbrett.info
@williamdbrett