European politics

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    ‘Categorically clear’: What being outside a customs union with the EU will mean for post-Brexit UK

‘Categorically clear’: What being outside a customs union with the EU will mean for post-Brexit UK

Being outside a customs union with the EU will mean that costs of many goods will be higher, risks associated with trade will be greater, and borders (including with Ireland) will have to be harder. Katy Hayward (Queen’s University Belfast) cautions about the consequences for British businesses and consumers of this new statement of intention from the British government. 

The statement issued (4 […]

Svexit or Huxit? How another country could follow the UK out of the EU

What are the chances of another country following the UK out of the EU? Eurosceptics in other states may be emboldened by the deal the UK manages to secure, especially if it includes access to the Single Market. Moves to further EU integration could have a similar effect. Simon Hix (LSE) and Nick Sitter (Central European University) look at […]

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    Macron is correct: even at the heart of Europe the EU has a serious image problem

Macron is correct: even at the heart of Europe the EU has a serious image problem

Emmanuel Macron’s  words on Sunday morning regarding the result of a hypothetical ‘Frexit’ referendum shouldn’t come as a surprise, writes Joseph Downing (CNRS Aix-Marseille Université). Whilst located at the heart of Europe, France has a serious Eurosceptism problem. This, however, does not mean that it is actually heading for a ‘Frexit’, he cautions. 

Britain has often been framed as the Eurosceptic outsider, a somewhat provincial island nation nostalgic for […]

Is the European Parliament missing an opportunity to reform after Brexit?

While Brexit negotiations are beginning to progress, the European Parliament is preparing to vote on the possible reallocation of seats following the UK’s departure. With many of the current proposals reflecting Member States’ concerns about losing seats, Robert Kalcik, Nicolas Moes and Guntram B Woolf (Bruegel) advocate for options that could better achieve equality of representation even within the […]

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    The European Parliament is more representative of European citizens than we give it credit for

The European Parliament is more representative of European citizens than we give it credit for

Does the European Parliament adequately represent the views of European citizens? Drawing on a recent study, Miriam Sorace illustrates that while the Parliament is often criticised for being too distant from its voters, it is far more representative of the views of voters than commonly thought. Nevertheless, a lack of information about European election campaigns, as well as a […]

What Euroscepticism looks like in Central and Eastern Europe

In the rest of the EU, Euroscepticism is driven by particular complaints and resentments – some of which are shared by British Eurosceptics, and others (such as unhappiness at the Greek bailout) which are local. Simona Guerra (University of Leicester) reports on a recent conference in Bratislava, which looks at the forms Euroscepticism has taken among Latvians, Slovakians, Germans and Austrians since the economic crisis.

Public Euroscepticism is […]

What has been learned from recent EU trade negotiations?

What lessons has the EU drawn from the CETA and TTIP trade negotiations? Johan Adriaensen (Maastricht University) argues that the trade package contained in Jean-Claude Juncker’s State of the Union speech presented a coherent vision for how EU trade negotiations could move forward, with avenues for discontent at future agreements to be channelled through representative institutions. However, implementing these ideas […]

Et alors? Brexit leaves the French largely indifferent

There is little public debate in France about Brexit. Of course, when Michel Barnier opens a new round of negotiations with David Davis in Brussels, articles appear in the media. But generally, French society and even mainstream politicians are not terribly interested. Many people in France believe Brexit has to happen because it will solve a problem: British governments, […]

When it comes to EU solidarity, do cosmopolitans practise what they preach?

What does it mean to be cosmopolitan – to be the kind of ‘global citizen’ whom Theresa May famously described as ‘citizens of nowhere’? Does it really make people care as much for people in other countries as they do for those of the same nationality, or do cosmopolitans pay only lip service to EU solidarity? A study by […]

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    Brexit assessments: ignorance isn’t bliss — quantitative forecasts do matter

Brexit assessments: ignorance isn’t bliss — quantitative forecasts do matter

When questioned about the government’s Brexit sectoral impact assessments, David Davis said there were none, because “economic forecasts do not work”. Costas Milas explains why this excuse does not hold up.

Quizzed at a hearing of the Exiting the European Union Committee, Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union David Davis stated that there are no sectoral impact assessments […]