This project is funded through Constitution Unit Director Meg Russell's Senior Fellowship with the ESRC-funded UK in a Changing Europe (UKICE) programme, which runs for three years, from June 2019 to May 2022. Meg is one of nine such Senior Fellows focused on a variety of Brexit-related fields.
The Fellowship comprises two main elements. The first is to work alongside the UKICE team to facilitate events and commentary on key topics around the broad topic of ‘Brexit, Parliament and the Constitution’. Recent examples include:
- An article in the Guardian on 6 September, about the strains recent Brexit events have put on parliament and the constitution
- A widely-shared interview on BBC Radio 4's World at One Programme on 28 August, discussing the recently-announced prorogation.
- Meg Russell's appearance on the Prospect podcast on 14 August 2019, discussing a possible vote of no confidence and 'unity' government.
- A detailed interview with Meg Russell on the BBC Radio 4 PM Programme on 9 August discussing what MPs can do to block a 'no deal' Brexit
- Evidence to the House of Commons Exiting the European Union Committee on on prospects for a further Brexit referendum on 24 July 2019.
- A conference held on 15 July 2019 on 'Brexit and the Constitution' - watch a video of Meg Russell's panel at the conference.
The second part of the project will comprise detailed research and publications focussed on Brexit and parliament. This is anticipated as having three strands:
- The relationship and tensions between principles of direct and representative democracy in the UK constitution.
- The extent and shape of parliament’s influence over the Brexit process.
- What the Brexit process has told us about the need for possible future parliamentary reforms.
This work will build on various past work conducted by Meg Russell, including the Independent Commission on Referendums, her work on the policy impact of the Westminster parliament, and various projects on parliamentary reform, including the project on parliament’s control of its own agenda that helped lay the groundwork for the 2009 recommendations by the ‘Wright committee’.
The research will result in various outputs, including blogposts, academic journal articles, reports and a likely book.
Project leader: Professor Meg Russell
Timetable: June 2019 - May 2022
This project is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council’s The UK in a Changing Europe initiative.