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The Icelandic Constitution Explained

Prof Thor Gylfason
Great meeting on March 29th in Parliament with Professor Thorvaldur Gylfason who won the highest number of votes in elections for the Commission to write Iceland’s “crowd sourced” constitution. The ICC had no elected politicians – now the Icelandic Parliament are chewing over the radical changes a referendum to approve the constitution will take place on the same day in June as Presidential elections ( boosting turnout) or later in the autumn. Thor said many memorable things during the event – not least that he thinks anyone wanting an independent Scotland should consider handing the task of creating a new Constitution for Scotland to the people and should start the process now. 
What follows is not the whole event but Thor’s full speech – a riveting 45 minutes.

Listen to Professor Thorvaldur Gylfason Nordic Horizons’ Presentation here.


You can listen along with the slides Thor used on


Or for a quicker 7 minute version Thor was interviewed by Derek Bateman on BBC’s Newsweek Scotland

Scroll through to 16 minutes 20 seconds where the interview begins.

Thanks again to NH organisers Dan and April, Chris Smith for posting the audio and taking pix, Lily Greenan who took notes (coming soon), the elegant and feisty Icelandic Vice Consul Kristin Hannesdottir, and Profs David McCrone & Elizabeth Meehan and the 7 MSPs who came along.


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1 Comment

  1. In Spain the constitution was recently changed on the requirement of the EU to incorporate a clause making repayment of government debt the absolute priority of any government, over any other use of government funds. Apparently as the price of leaving elected government in place and avoiding intervention. The same change is to be required across Europe, though few countries seem to have been forced to do so for the moment and others have not volunteered. While I was highly impressed by the Icelandic stance, I do not see how it can either (a) survive the country’s entry into this kind of Europe and (b) imagine how it can be translated to any other country currently a member of the EU. Having no expertise at all in these matters I would like to hear the views of others who have.

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