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What actually is 'levelling up'? What we know about Boris Johnson's agenda – and what we don't

By Jack Newman, Research Fellow, Department of Sociology, University of Surrey
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The promise to “level up and unite the country” has been a central message since the current UK government came to power in 2019. During the election of that year, the slogan was the counterpart to the promise to “get Brexit done”, providing one of history’s simplest plans for government. Step 1: get Brexit done. Step 2: level up.

With Brexit officially “done”, the government turned its attention to step 2. Although this agenda has been somewhat slowed by the pandemic, the phrase “levelling up” has steadily proliferated across Whitehall, and this autumn we are to expect a landmark…


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