EU referendum

Book review | Guilty Men – the Brexit Edition, by Tim Oliver

Book review | Guilty Men – the Brexit Edition, by Tim Oliver

Brexit is as big and dangerous a mistake as that of appeasement in the 1930s. So argues Cato the Younger in his book Guilty Men: Brexit Edition, reviewed here by Tim Oliver. Taking up the pen of his great grandfather, whose 1940 book of the same name destroyed the reputations of those responsible for appeasement, Cato the Younger is no […]

The EU is extraordinarily complex. But do we want to simplify it?

The EU is extraordinarily complex. But do we want to simplify it?

The EU’s institutional architecture is often regarded as being too complex for citizens to properly engage with, and both Jean-Claude Juncker and Emmanuel Macron have recently proposed some form of simplification – such as merging the President of the European Commission with the President of the European Council, or shrinking the Commission. Dimiter Toshkov argues that while […]

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

Referendum campaigns 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 […]

Audit 2017: How democratic is the Brexit process?

Audit 2017: How democratic is the Brexit process?

Many political and constitutional steps are needed in order to for the UK to leave the European Union, after 44 years as a full member. Cumulatively they form one of the biggest constitutional changes in British history, and one dogged by intense controversy and disputes. As part of our 2017 Audit of UK Democracy, Joelle Grogan examines […]

The Citizens’ Assembly on Brexit: reflections on the first weekend

The Citizens’ Assembly on Brexit: reflections on the first weekend

The Citizens’ Assembly on Brexit – a gathering of randomly-selected people who will learn about the options for the form Brexit should take – has just begun its work. The project’s director Alan Renwick (UCL Constitution Unit) offers some initial, personal reflections on a highly successful first weekend. Similar PostsWhat would voters be asked in a second […]

A tale of two referendums, but similar Remainers: 1975 and 2016

A tale of two referendums, but similar Remainers: 1975 and 2016

The British public has voted on membership of the EU on two occasions. In 1975, based on a turnout of 64 per cent, two-thirds voted to stay in the EEC, cementing Britain’s place for the next four decades. In 2016, on a turnout of 72 per cent, 52 per cent of the public voted to […]

Book reviews | A Brexit summer reading round-up

Book reviews | A Brexit summer reading round-up

Have you been struggling to keep up with all the new books on Brexit? Were you secretly planning to spend your summer holiday catching up on some of them? OK – perhaps not. Nonetheless, Tim Oliver has rounded up some of the best books about Brexit published since the referendum. Similar PostsBook review | Guilty Men – […]

Audit 2017: How democratic is the overall set-up of devolved government within the UK?

Audit 2017: How democratic is the overall set-up of devolved government within the UK?

Devolution in the UK encompasses a range of quite different solutions in three countries (Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland), plus lesser delegations of powers to London and some English cities. Designed to meet specific demands for national or regional control and to bring government closer to citizens, there are important issues around the stability and […]

Book review | Why the UK Voted for Brexit: David Cameron’s Great Miscalculation

Book review | Why the UK Voted for Brexit: David Cameron’s Great Miscalculation

In Why the UK Voted for Brexit: David Cameron’s Great Miscalculation, Andrew Glencross offers an analysis of Brexit. While the pace of developments since the book’s publication inevitably makes some of its observations prematurely obsolete, this remains an important and historically sensitive account of this momentous event in the domestic and international political landscape, writes Chris Moreh.  […]

If you believe Brexit is a mistake, you have a democratic duty to oppose it

If you believe Brexit is a mistake, you have a democratic duty to oppose it

Is there a duty to implement the EU referendum result? Not if you believe it to be a profound mistake, argues Albert Weale. We cannot sensibly and intelligibly use the language of ‘the will of the people’ in respect of the referendum result. It is not simply a device for the registering of the preferences of […]

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