The future of human rights protection in the United Kingdom is on the verge of change as the government prepares its consultation to replace the Human Rights Act with a Bill of Rights. The consultation stage represents a critical step whose result I hope will dispel fears of regression in the UK's commitment to human rights.
It is not the time to turn our backs on Europe, leaving us isolated, side-lined and alone. By voting to remain in, Britain can thrive. Together we show the world an open, outward-facing Britain we can all be proud of. Join the Liberal Democrat campaign today, to remain in together, and to stand up for the type of Britain you think we should be.
Those in the far-right will be waiting in the wing not only to voice their opposition but also to fill the political void if the opportunity arises. In doing so, those far-right voices will continue to exploit the view that Europe is under siege from an invading Islamic other as it has been - in their minds at least - throughout history.
The pristine white snow and luxury hotels of the Swiss town of Davos formed the backdrop recently to the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum; the most significant gathering of the planet's foremost economic, business and political brains. Three days of speeches, discussions and dinners that truly have an influence of global proportions...
So yes cooperation is challenging, joint decision making sometimes seems a pain. But the Britain Sir Michael and I both love has always had the confidence and courage to be outward looking, collaborative, forward thinking and a strong advocate of free trade. We will soon have the chance to prove that these great attributes remain.
Economic performance is ever variable, but a raison d'être based in being a moral force for good is a more durable status and one that might be better suited to winning the loyalties of citizens. At the very least one would think that Europe's defenders might have something more to say than just repeating those scary economic threats.
Every year I rashly agree to forecast/guess what will be the key sustainability trends for the year ahead. This time last year I did predict that under investment in flood defences would force government onto the back foot reducing them to sticky plaster solutions - so I got at least one right! What then might happen in 2016?
2015 will probably be seen as the year when the terms 'EU' and 'crisis' became inextricably linked. Yet 2016 may prove more challenging still. Chronic instability persists on Europe's frontiers and both the turmoil in the eurozone and the chaos engendered by the arrival of waves of migrants and refugees look set to recur. Moreover, for the first time in its history, the Union faces the prospect of a member state voting to quit its ranks.