The electorate in Britain has become highly critical of the way the European Union, and indeed the European Court of Human Rights, operate. With the upcoming referendum on British EU membership, public opinion – and campaigning – has hinged on how the Union performs institutionally and in certain policy areas, on the government’s negotiated deal, and on whether the UK is expected to be better off in or out.
But what are the concrete facts underlying our often highly politicized perception of key policy areas and institutional relations? What are the arguments in favour and against “Brexit”, what is the bigger picture, and what might the consequences of either vote be?
Since January 2015, the UCL European Institute has been leading on a European Commission funded project to research and debate Britain’s relationship to Europe. What originally started off as a series aiming to dissect a complex, politicised relationship and examine possibilities of institutional reform has been overtaken – and fundamentally changed – by actual events. As such, the project’s focus has turned ever more clearly to an examination of the most urgent political debate in Britain’s – and Europe’s – recent history: the referendum on the UK’s EU membership.
Throughout the project’s life span – from January 2015 to July 2016 – we have also organised a series of public debates with academics, analysts, experts, and campaigners. We have produced a range of resources on policy areas and institutional questions, and host this blog. For further information, see the UCL European Institute’s website.
This blog features contributions from UCL academics, scholars from other UK and international universities, and experts from the field, to create the first bespoke, university-hosted blog on Britain’s relationship to the European Union.
For media enquiries or if you are interested in contributing, please contact us.