Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Democracy & Citizenship

Russia, the EU and the Return of History

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Publication resulting from the UACES 2018 Graduate Research Conference Russia and the European Union (EU) emerged as twin products of the end of history, writes Daniel Matthews-Ferrero. Arguing that the return of history is exemplified in both domestic politics (through the decomposition of liberal democracy, best expressed through the rise of populism) and in international relations (increasing […]

UACES Graduate Forum Conference 2018 | KU Leuven

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UACES Graduate Forum Conference 2018 KU Leuven, belgium On 12-13 July 2018, forty postgraduate and early career researchers across a range of disciplines gathered at KU Leuven to present and receive feedback on their work on contemporary Europe and the European Union. The theme of this year’s conference was ‘An Actor on Multiple Stages: the […]

Giving up on Article 50?

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So today sees the publication of the first tranche of ‘no-deal’ preparedness notices from the British government. I’m writing ahead of this, so maybe this’ll be out of date within a few hours, but let’s see what we can piece together so far. The basic issue for the government is that it’s now caught on the horns […]

Brexit is built on sand

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Last May in Parliament, Prime Minister, Theresa May, summed up her promises for Brexit in just 15-seconds: no hard border on the island of Ireland, and as frictionless trade as possible with the rest of the EU. Of course, we already have that now. And of course, this cannot be delivered after Brexit. The Brexit […]

Don’t panic, says Theresa May

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Our Prime Minister, Theresa May, has urged the public not to be “worried” by her government’s plans to stockpile food and medicine to prepare for a no-deal Brexit. She is taking us all for fools. Gary Lineker got it right when he responded: “A wealthy nation putting itself in a position where it has to stockpile […]

We still haven’t won the arguments we lost

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It is a poor reflection of the pro-Remain campaign that even two years after the referendum, much of Britain is still basking in shocking ignorance about how the EU functions, the reason it exists, and how it is a democracy run by its members for the benefit of its members. We are leaving the EU […]

New article on Vico and Democracy

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  New article forthcoming (in 2018) in History of Humanities and posted to SSRN: Democracy and the Vernacular Imagination in Vico’s Plebian Philology Abstract: This essay examines Giambattista Vico’s philology as a contribution to democratic legitimacy. I outline three steps in Vico’s account of the historical and political development of philological knowledge. First, his merger of […]

From 2005’s ‘Permissive Consensus’ to TTIP’s ‘Empowering Dissensus’: The EU as a Playing Field for Spanish Civil Society

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At a time when the EU is undergoing a number of crises, some seen as existential and provoking an upsurge in theorising on the disintegration of the EU, Luis Bouza and Alvaro Oleart offer intriguing reasons for suggesting there is room for more optimism. In a succinct summary of their larger article, recently published in JCER, […]

Pie in the sky Brexit

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This week Prime Minister, Theresa May, told the House of Commons Liaison Committee that the UK could have frictionless trade with the EU, without being in the Single Market or the EU customs union. SNP MP, Angus Brendan MacNeil, told the Prime Minister that her plans were “pie in the sky”. Not only is he […]

Getting to an end-state

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Let’s suppose my university likes talking about the future. They might do fancy powerpoint presentations, with artists’ impressions of shiny buildings and other infrastructure, together with charts showing How It’s All Going To Be Great. Looks wonderful, I might think. But how do we get there, I might also think. And then it might turn […]

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