Paul Vallely

Paul Vallely is visiting professor in Public Ethics at the University of Chester and a senior research fellow at the Brooks World Poverty Institute at the University of Manchester. He writes on ethical, political and cultural issues. He has a fortnightly column in the Independent on Sunday and also writes for the New York Times and the Church Times. His latest book is Pope Francis – Untying the Knots. He was co-author of the report of the Commission for Africa and has chaired several development charities.

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Sir Alex Ferguson’s genius kept us at the top for far longer than should have been the case

Moyes sacking: He is the fall guy for Glazers’ policy

The departed manager had many faults and had to go, writes United season-ticket holder Paul Vallely, but the crisis at Old Trafford stems from 2005’s disgraceful leveraged buyout

The church has lost its way on the road to gay marriage

Since Victorian times, when marrying for love became commonplace, this weekend’s change has been inevitable

No contest: Russian flags show how people of Sevastopol will vote in today’s referendum

Ukraine crisis: Is the West trying to upset the Russians?

This is not the Cold War. Ukraine should not be forced to take sides, but the EU and US are behaving provocatively on Moscow's doorstep

Pope Francis - the first year: Is the rebel too good to be true?

He is cleaning up the Vatican bank. He thinks the Catholic Church should worry less about homosexuality and more about the poor. He has ruffled feathers - but, asks his biographer Paul Vallely, is he as radical as he seems?

Part of the process: Former IRA member John Downey

Northern Ireland: The responses, not the IRA amnesties, damage peace

The slow running peace process in Northern Ireland has not been helped by the posturing on all sides after the IRA amnesty revelations

The vicious schism between Sunni and Shia has been poisoning Islam for 1,400 years - and it's getting worse

Tracing the current conflict in Syria back to the year 632, when the Prophet Mohamed died

Determined: Danny Bond, seen here in 2001, eventually decided to starve himself to death

Child euthanasia: Too hard to live, too young to die

The decision in Belgium to allow euthanasia for sick children raises questions about the fitness of young people to make life-and-death decisions, and about medical ethics

A scene from 'The Prince of the Pagodas'
Still Freakish ... but increasingly common weather is causing problems around the world, like in the Somerset Levels

Prince Charles is right about climate change

Ignoring global warming and its causes is a comforting path for politicians paralysed by self-interest and the consolations of denial

Get the picture: Despite the positive spin, Benefits Street creates more Others for us to dismiss as diabolical

As 'Benefits Street' shows, we are quick to demonise and slow to understand

In its attempt to chase ratings, the Channel 4 programme merely reinforces stereotypes about people who rely on the state

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No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor