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Category Archives: The EU

Respecting voters’ ‘mistakes’: The EU and euroscepticism

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I’m just back from Montreal, where I was invited by the EU Centre of Excellence at the Université de Montréal and McGill University to participate in a roundtable on the European elections. My plan was simple: to go and talk about how well eurosceptic parties of different stripes had done, but how they were likely to be […]

I love the smell of democracy in the morning…

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It’s voting day here in the UK, so I’m off to the polling station to exercise my democratic rights. When I vote, I’ll be choosing who represents me in the world’s only supranational, directly-elected Parliament, a body that speaks for half a billion people. And because of a decision made some 15 years ago, there’s […]

Europe seen from Maastricht:what happened to the post-Cold War project?

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I’m visiting the University of Maastricht this week, using the EU’s ERASMUS+ teaching exchange programme. It’s a great means of seeing how other institutions work, and of sharing practice with others, but it’s not so well known: if it hadn’t been for a chance email that dropped in my inbox last summer, I’d not have been able […]

Reporting Europe: euromyths and euro-reality?

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Tonight I’m speaking on a roundtable in Edinburgh on ‘Reporting Europe‘, where we’ll be considering how the media covers the EU and the influence of euromyths in the debate. I wrote about this last year, but it’s a good time to revisit the issue, given the quality (or perhaps ‘quality’) of the media coverage of the European […]

Do facts matter when discussing the EU?

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For the past couple of days, I’ve been competing in the inaugural EU Twitter Fight Club, where tweeps from different parts of the (notional) European public sphere have been trying to show off their tweeting ability (very broadly defined).  To call it a pleasure would be a stretch, but it’s certainly been informative for me, both […]

Will 2015 see the end of UKIP?

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It’s almost Easter, so it is also time for the Political Studies Association annual conference, held this year in Manchester. I had the great pleasure of sitting on a roundtable on UKIP with Rick Whitaker, Phil Lynch and Matt Goodwin, where we discussed the party’s support, strategy and organisation: much debate ensued. We’re producing a series of blog posts […]

Scoping the non-EU: Brexit’s paradox

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The IEA finally announced the winner of its Brexit Prize this week. Last June it unveiled a competition for submissions to map out in detail how the UK could leave the EU and pursue a new path. The winner would receive €100,000 (presumably ironically) and a handy rejoinder would be provided to all those who complain that […]

Nick, Nigel, Europe and us: A raging debate?

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So that was it, the big debate, in all its BBC Two glory. I think we all learnt something from it. For myself, I learnt that I’m almost exactly 10 years younger than Nigel Farage and that both he and Nick Clegg need to sack the people who write their “jokes.” Otherwise, I have to confess I was […]

Starting a debate on Europe? Clegg v. Farage

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Despite the usual embarrassment of riches that I could cover, today I’m going to build on some of the thoughts that I discussed some weeks ago, regarding the LibDem’s strategy for the European Parliament elections. During the past weeks, we’ve seen Nick Clegg offer - and Nigel Farage accept - to have a public debate on things European, which will have […]

Britain as the Good European

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A couple of things have caught my eye this week in the world of UK-EU relations, one relatively minor, the other potentially much bigger. However, they are linked by a common strand of thinking about how the UK acts and is perceived. The minor thing was an article at the start of the week by Boris […]

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