“Around the world, multination states are in trouble. Many have proven unable to create or sustain any strong sense of solidarity across ethnonational lines[i].” (Will Kymlicka, 2001).
Investigating the Social Cohesion Research and Early Warning Division of the Council of Europe, it is natural to question the meaning of social cohesion. Social cohesion is an outcome of the Council of Europe’s main objectives: Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law, but, to some extent, I would also argue that it is a necessary ingredient of these same concepts. Without social cohesion, human rights are compromised, the unity required for democracy is missing, and there is no incentive to apply the rule of law. I would go further and say that the terrorism-security debate is fundamentally a consequence of failed social cohesion, and in its absence human rights are inevitably abused, democracy is ineffective and the rule of law is applied in accordance with the largest force wielded (c.f. UK police ‘stop and search’ powers under the ‘sus’ law, extraordinary rendition in EU states, UK parliamentary debate on the 42-day terror limit.) Continue reading Social Cohesion Research and Early Warning