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WTO rules OK? Not any more

Many Brexiteers see the WTO as a desirable framework for the UK’s trade. Donald Trump dislikes it. Steven Woolcock (LSE) explains how the WTO has been undermined by outdated rules, US trade policy and China’s support for its own industries. It looks like rather a poor alternative to negotiating agreements with major markets.

Two developments are seen as evidence of […]

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    What do Europeans know about the EU before they go to the polls?

What do Europeans know about the EU before they go to the polls?

Voters across Europe are set to go to the polls for European Parliament elections on 23-26 May, but how much do citizens really know about how the EU works? Florian Stoeckel (University of Exeter) presents findings from a new survey of citizens in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, and Sweden. He writes that while the EU’s democratic deficit is […]

Taking (back) control? The EU Withdrawal Act 2019 and the balance of power

The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2019 is a Pyrrhic victory, writes Alison Young (University of Cambridge). It did little to modify the relative powers of the House of Commons and the Government and, if anything, its long-term consequence may transfer power from the Commons to the government. 

In an insightful post, David Howarth set out a conflict between two visions of democracy: […]

Maastricht debate 2019: a second scramble for Africa?

The EU, the UK and China all want to pursue interests in Africa. In a post-Brexit world, this may lead to even greater rivalry. To prevent a neo-colonial “scramble for Africa,” the EU should now follow Fran’s Timmermans’ proposal and “embrace Africa as a sister continent”. It may be the only player that could convincingly do so. Kate Hall […]

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    Long read: Does the EU stop Britain from using state aid to help its economy?

Long read: Does the EU stop Britain from using state aid to help its economy?

Some argue that when it is no longer constrained by the EU’s state aid rules, Britain will be able to pursue a more interventionist economic strategy. Kitty Stewart (LSE) asks whether this claim stacks up.

A series of EU regulations restrict state intervention in the economy in EU member states, including complex state aid rules aimed at promoting competition. The original […]

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    The battle for Europe’s future: the next European Parliament will be more fragmented independently of Brexit

The battle for Europe’s future: the next European Parliament will be more fragmented independently of Brexit

This week’s European Parliament elections are a battle for Europe’s future. In this blog, Thierry Chopin, Nicolò Fraccaroli, Nils Hernborg and Jean-Francois Jamet examine the evolution of political cleavages ahead of the vote and the potential impact of Brexit on their result. They argue the next European Parliament will be more fragmented independently of Brexit.

Political cleavages – that is, the key dividing […]

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    Brexit and collective cabinet responsibility: why the Convention is still working

Brexit and collective cabinet responsibility: why the Convention is still working

Robert Brett Taylor (University of Aberdeen) discusses constitutional conventions under the post-Brexit constitution. He asks whether there is a continued constitutional purpose for the Convention of Collective Cabinet Responsibility in the modern era? He maintains that, despite current turmoil, it would be premature to say that the Convention is broken as a result of Brexit. 

Theresa May’s attempts to deliver Brexit have […]

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    What people say about migration and Brexit: stories from Glasgow’s East End

What people say about migration and Brexit: stories from Glasgow’s East End

How does immigration feature in the accounts of Leavers and Remainers? Anna Gawlewicz (University of Glasgow) talked to 20 (largely) Scottish residents of the East End of Glasgow about the impact it had on their voting preferences and understanding of Brexit.

In the East End of Glasgow, Brexit may not be the number one concern. It is a place of […]

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    Elections to the European Parliament: what if more people voted?

Elections to the European Parliament: what if more people voted?

Can the rise of Eurosceptic and extremist parties be blamed on the mobilisation of people who previously had abstained from the polls? An analysis of the 2009 and 2014 elections to the European Parliament suggests that support for Eurosceptic parties would be largely unaffected by changes in voter turnout, write Uwe Remer-Bollow, Patrick Bernhagen and Richard Rose. Extremist parties would even have lost […]

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    Understanding the enhanced role of the European Parliament in the Brexit negotiations

Understanding the enhanced role of the European Parliament in the Brexit negotiations

The European Parliament was initially viewed as having a fairly limited part to play in the Brexit negotiations. However, as Carlos Closa (European University Institute) writes, the Parliament has effectively crafted a central role for itself in the process. This has been achieved by combining the unconcealed brandishing of its veto threat with the promotion of strong internal unity and […]