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The five must-reads posts from today, on the unions, Ed Balls and Oona King’s mayoral campaign.

1. How unions could play deciding role in Labour leadership

The Guardian's Patrick Wintour looks at which Labour leadership candidate is likely to win the most support from the trade unions.

2. The case against Ed Balls

Tom Bage of Labour Uncut responds to Kerry McCarthy's Staggers post, arguing that Balls is perceived as being more directly implicated in the bitter battles of the Brown-Blair era than the other candidates.

3. An electoral problem

As new data shows how many young Lib Dems failed to vote, Mark Pack explores ways for the party to improve this state of affairs.

4. Oona King unveils strong support against Ken

With two days left until nominations for Labour's London mayoral candidate close, Oona King has revealed that she is backed by 11 MPs across the capital. Sunny Hundal has the details.

5. Ireland: United it stands?

Jon Snow wonders whether the burgeoning nationalist middle class in Northern Ireland would actually vote to unite with the south.

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New Digital Editor: Serena Kutchinsky

The New Statesman appoints Serena Kutchinsky as Digital Editor.

Serena Kutchinsky is to join the New Statesman as digital editor in September. She will lead the expansion of the New Statesman across a variety of digital platforms.

Serena has over a decade of experience working in digital media and is currently the digital editor of Newsweek Europe. Since she joined the title, traffic to the website has increased by almost 250 per cent. Previously, Serena was the digital editor of Prospect magazine and also the assistant digital editor of the Sunday Times - part of the team which launched the Sunday Times website and tablet editions.

Jason Cowley, New Statesman editor, said: “Serena joins us at a great time for the New Statesman, and, building on the excellent work of recent years, she has just the skills and experience we need to help lead the next stage of our expansion as a print-digital hybrid.”

Serena Kutchinsky said: “I am delighted to be joining the New Statesman team and to have the opportunity to drive forward its digital strategy. The website is already established as the home of free-thinking journalism online in the UK and I look forward to leading our expansion and growing the global readership of this historic title.

In June, the New Statesman website recorded record traffic figures when more than four million unique users read more than 27 million pages. The circulation of the weekly magazine is growing steadily and now stands at 33,400, the highest it has been since the early 1980s.