Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Politics & Public Policy

Brexit, Scotland, and the Kingdom: a constitutional drama in four acts

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The European Union (EU) referendum result has led to the unfolding of a domestic constitutional drama in the United Kingdom, which on its current trajectory could lead to its break-up. This is the first of two blog posts which maps the initial trajectory by considering the roles of the key institutional actors in the drama so far. […]

Running down the clock as a strategy in Article 50

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As we all wait with baited breath – possibly – for Theresa May’s Florence speech, I’d like to explore one aspect of Article 50 that’s been visible but somewhat under-considered: the time constraint. Having talked with various people in Brussels and London in recent weeks, I’ve been struck by how time is seen both as a help […]

Probably, shading to possibly: the chances of a Brexit deal

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I’m in Brussels this week, getting a practitioner counterpoint to last week’s academic reflections on the whole Brexit business. While it’s reassuring to see that the two views are not so different, it is not an inspiring picture and it invites an obvious question about whether Article 50 is going to get to a deal or not. […]

The great and the good of Brexit

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I’m just back from the UACES conference in Krakow, which was filled – like last year’s – with much talk of Brexit. I came away 12 months ago with a lot to get out of my system (here and here), but this time I am filled more with weariness: 90% of what I wrote 12 months ago still applies. […]

How Brexit Reveals the Inherent Flaws of Devolution

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While the debate on Brexit remains heated, with all eyes fixed on the ongoing negotiation process and its consequences for both the EU and the UK, it is important to remind oneself that the United Kingdom does not only consist of the four ‘home nations’, but also of a variety of regions. In other words: […]

The weak/strong paradox of Brexit

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I’m wrapping up for a summer break, just as more Brexit stuff is about to be released: tant pis. While we wait for that – and it might not come to much – I’d like to revisit a theme that has long floated about the Brexit debate, namely the weak/strong paradox. Simply put, many of those who argue(d) […]

International relations reconsidered: Accession of the EU to Ukraine – a 2030 scenario?

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This fictional story, which can potentially materialize, is to be pondered about, given the current oncoming of apparently uncertain times in the global politics. This is a scenario of how, for the sake of progress and stability, the EU should avoid the political and territorial division of the European continent and ongoing divisions into the […]

A tentative model of the EU27’s approach to Brexit

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As everyone (semi-)winds down for the August break, and the pace of events slows, it is a useful point to consider Article 50 and Brexit once more. While I have usually looked at this from the British end, this time I’d like to look at it from the EU’s perspective, not only because I’m now […]

The political and reputational costs of ‘no deal’

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Today, UK in a Changing Europe publishes its report on “The Cost of No Deal“, to which I’ve contributed. Here I consider some of the wider ramifications. There is one than one way that the Article 50 process might fail to reach an agreement and it is useful to consider each of these in turn, […]

Brexit is a fascinating case study for students and teachers of UK and EU politics

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Brexit is both a boon and a bane to the teaching and study of British and European politics. In this piece written with Alex Boyle, a politics student at the University of Liverpool, we set out the five ways in which Brexit is central to the study and teaching of both.  As a student learning the […]

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