Campaigns

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    What makes Britain ‘Great’? The end of the postwar consensus of liberal internationalism

What makes Britain ‘Great’? The end of the postwar consensus of liberal internationalism

The Leave and Remain campaigns defined British ‘greatness’ in very different ways. The referendum reflects more than attitudes toward EU membership — it  marks a new understanding of Britain’s role in the world, argues Benjamin Martill (LSE). The end of the postwar consensus of liberal internationalism has important implications and needs to be taken seriously.

The ‘Great’ in Great Britain is a geographical […]

Most British MPs used to avoid tweeting about the EU, leaving Eurosceptics to fill the gap

There was a time when the topic of the EU had little salience in British politics. Resul Umit (Vienna Institute for Advanced Studies) analysed the tweets of MPs in Ireland, Westminster and the devolved governments and found that few tweeted much about EU affairs in 2014-15, especially if they were in unsafe seats. This allowed Eurosceptical parliamentarians to fill the […]

Referendum campaigns can end up convincing voters that their preferred party is right

When people are deciding how to vote in a referendum, do they take their cue from party loyalty or by listening to the debate and making up their own minds? When Céline Colombo (University of Zurich) and Hanspeter Kriesi (European University Institute) analysed two Swiss referendums, they found that voters do pay attention to the arguments. But during the referendum campaigns they […]

Brexit and the mainstreaming of the British far right

In an extract from his new book English Uprising: Brexit and the Mainstreaming of the Far Right, Paul Stocker (Teesside University) looks at the role Vote Leave’s inaccurate claim that Turkey was about to join the EU, and its ‘Breaking Point’ poster, had on the tone of the referendum campaign. It sought to link immigration with terrorism, and in particular with […]

The EU referendum was gerrymandered

In an extract from his new book, Democracy and Its Crisis, AC Grayling (New College of the Humanities) argues that MPs were made aware the referendum result was non-binding. In addition, the franchise deliberately excluded groups with a direct interest in the result. Only 37% of those eligible to vote in the referendum backed Brexit. The EU referendum, he […]

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    EU membership was a cultural symbol which Remainers approved and Leavers disliked

EU membership was a cultural symbol which Remainers approved and Leavers disliked

Provision of more facts and objective information would have been of marginal significance in the Brexit vote. Michael Cunningham (University of Wolverhampton) offers his reflections on the EU referendum that point to the existence of substantial political limitations of evidence. He argues that one observes a widespread tendency among many voters to be resistant to facts challenging positions they hold. […]

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    ‘The brightest and best’, us – and the rest: desirable and undesirable migration in EU referendum leaflets

‘The brightest and best’, us – and the rest: desirable and undesirable migration in EU referendum leaflets

How did the leaflets circulated before the EU referendum talk about migrants? Alexandra Bulat (UCL SSEES) examines the LSE’s collection and finds – on both sides – a distinction between ‘desirable’ and ‘undesirable’ migrants, whether from within or outside the EU. At no point were the views of the migrants themselves heard.

Researchers agree that immigration, alongside economics, were the […]

September 15th, 2017|Campaigns, Featured, Migration|0 Comments|

What does respecting the referendum result mean?

 The Leave campaign – just like Donald Trump’s bid for the presidency – was based on a false prospectus. To respect the referendum result means to accept this as normal, writes Simon Wren-Lewis (Oxford University). It is not. Those who voted for a fall in immigration and more money for the NHS will not get them. That is why it […]

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    Practice makes perfect: how the Leave campaigns dominated Twitter in the EU referendum

Practice makes perfect: how the Leave campaigns dominated Twitter in the EU referendum

Twitter was a crucial campaigning platform ahead of Brexit. Simon Usherwood looks at its use by campaigners and places their efforts in a broader context. He explains that since the 1970s, politicians did not actively promote the benefits of being in the EU, leaving it to eurosceptics to promote their own agenda. This focus meant that in 2016, those […]

The Brexit referendum question was flawed in its design

The Brexit referendum question was flawed in its design by ignoring Kenneth Arrow’s impossibility theorem. Thomas Colignatus explains why.

Theresa May’s government, with support from the UK Parliament, has adopted Brexit as its policy aim and has invoked Article 50. Yet, economic theory assumes rational agents, and even governments might be open for rational reconsideration.

The unsatisfactory referendum question
Based upon voting […]