Exit negotiations

Irish unification is a solution to the border conundrum

Addressing the Irish border question has been at the centre of Brexit. Proposed solutions to the issue have divided not just the UK and the EU, but also the UK government and Parliament, and the two main political parties in Northern Ireland. These polarised approaches have resulted in delays to the Brexit process. Given the current political impasse, a […]

Book Review: Understanding Brexit: A Concise Introduction

Tim Oliver’s brilliant new book, Understanding Brexit – A Concise Introduction, leads us through the byzantine complexities of the European Union and the options for how the Brexit process may unfold. It is a valuable resource for teachers and students, especially those interested in a Brexit textbook. In it Oliver tells us that that Brexit provides a window onto questions about British […]

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    Brexit lessons from the Silesian backstop of 1919-25

Brexit lessons from the Silesian backstop of 1919-25

The Northern Irish backstop proposal is complex – but it is not unprecedented, writes Thea Don-Siemion (LSE). The Treaty of Versailles established arrangements to prevent a hard border between Germany and Poland in Silesia. It failed, becoming a flashpoint in the relationship between the two countries. Even a permanent backstop is a poorer guarantor of peace in Northern Ireland […]

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    Is Brexit the will of the people? The answer is not quite that simple

Is Brexit the will of the people? The answer is not quite that simple

The Prime Minister, Theresa May, has repeatedly asserted that Brexit is “the will of the British people”, and that the government, therefore, has a duty to “deliver” it. But is Brexit really the will of the British people? Christian List (LSE) takes a critical look at this question.

The Prime Minister assumes that “the will of the people” is to […]

Is Brexit a constitutional crisis, or a political one? The answer matters

Even now, with Brexit consuming Parliament, the question of whether we are suffering a constitutional or a political crisis is important, write Anand Menon and Alan Wager (The UK in a Changing Europe). Political crises are generally short-lived; constitutional crises represent a challenge to the system itself. A general election might be enough to push a deal through the […]

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    The Executive vs Parliament: Backbenchers now control Brexit

The Executive vs Parliament: Backbenchers now control Brexit

As the clock continues to run down the major foreign policy fiasco of Brexit remains unresolved. We still do not know what Brexit will look like, how exactly we will get there, or whether it will happen at all. In light of recent developments, it is now worth revisiting the question, who really has control of Brexit? The Commons’ backbenchers now […]

Quick take: the EU’s irrational position on the Brexit backstop

The EU would apparently prefer the UK to fall into no deal rather than compromising on the Northern Ireland backstop, writes Simon Witney (LSE). The stand-off could end if the EU were prepared to accept a second-best alternative.

The European Union’s position in the Brexit negotiations, if one takes it at face value, is self-evidently irrational. It is remarkable that […]

Does the House of Commons have power without influence?

The impasse over the Withdrawal Agreement has highlighted the inability of the House of Commons to shape the substance of the Brexit deal. There is a growing sense of frustration at the apparent unwillingness of MPs to face up to the limited choices before them, writes Jack Simson Caird (Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law). A key lesson from the […]

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    What explains the City of London’s ineffectiveness at shaping the Brexit negotiations?

What explains the City of London’s ineffectiveness at shaping the Brexit negotiations?

Given the importance of the financial services industry to the UK, why has it not been more successful in shaping the Brexit negotiations? This weakness is rooted in the contingency of the City of London’s position within the British state, and the system of pluralist representation upon which it rests, write Thomas Warren (University of East Anglia), Scott James […]

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    ‘Our Precious Union’: the threat to the integrity of the UK is increasing

‘Our Precious Union’: the threat to the integrity of the UK is increasing

The threat to the constitutional and territorial integrity of the United Kingdom is increasing, writes Nikos Skoutaris (University of East Anglia). He explains the ramifications of the backstop debacle for the future of ‘Our Precious Union’.

The decision of the Prime Minister Theresa May to stand down if the Parliament approves the Withdrawal Agreement has led a number of passionate proponents […]