was established in 2009, following initial
by the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust on how best to promote a renewal and
realignment of politics in Northern Ireland. The evidence from
public-attitudes surveys, interviews and focus groups was that there was
frustration with political deadlock and disengagement from
participation. The solution which emerged was to prepare a
which could attract widespread public support and set a new common
Initiated by a group of non-partisan activists and
thinkers, Platform for Change was constituted as a democratic
organisation, following a well-attended meeting in Belfast in March.
This set an agenda for further discussions over subsequent months, on
the tough challenges which face the region. These comprised the deadlock
on academic selection, sustainable economic development and embedded
sectarian division. A management committee was elected at the first of
these expert-led discussions, which each pointed towards a policy
The ideas emerging were distilled into a draft
platform, which was subsequently debated and refined. It was decided to
have a summary
version affirming the aspirations of Platform for Change and an
version with more argument and policy detail.
The success of this initiative will however depend not
just on the strength of the platform but also on the breadth and depth
of the support it enjoys. Please sign up to
join the growing list of signatories.