Last but not least of the issues I want to cover is another one close to me personally: research and education. I appreciate that this might not be at the top of everyone’s priority list when deciding how to vote in the referendum, but I have been asked about it and was interested for my own reasons. So I wanted to address the role the EU plays in funding science and research in the UK, how it affects science and higher education more generally, and what effect leaving the EU might have in these areas. I might need to apologise in advance for the statistically heavy nature of this post!
A recent hot topic of the EU referendum debate is security and defence. There has been talk of an EU army, and concerns about how secure the UK is inside and would be outside the EU have been raised. In this post I address the questions of the EU’s role in security and defence, the prospect of an EU army, and how security in the UK might be affected by a vote to leave the EU.
How does the EU affect the rights that we have access to in the UK? What is the EU’s role in protecting our rights and how would these be affected if the UK votes to leave the EU? What influence does the EU have over criminal justice in the UK? These are just some of the big questions being asked in the run up to next week’s referendum.
Now for one of my personal favourite topics: democracy and sovereignty. It is important to understand how the EU works before we can consider how democratic it may or may not be, given the criticism that is widely voiced of a democratic deficit and unelected bureaucrats imposing laws on the UK. So here I set out how the EU works, how democratic we may consider it to be, and how much influence the EU might have over legislation in the UK.
Apologies for my recent silence, it is exam marking season so I have been otherwise engaged. However I did participate in a very interesting debate on the EU Referendum at the University of Warwick earlier this week, which is available to listen to online here, if you are interested.
Anyway, back to the referendum, and closely linked with my previous post on the economy is the issue of trade. How much trade actually takes place between the UK and the EU? What implications does this trade relationship have on aspects of life in the UK? And what might the situation be if the UK leaves the EU?
Another highly contentious aspect of the EU referendum debate so far has concerned the economic costs and benefits of EU membership for the UK, and the economic implications of leaving or remaining within the Union. I need to add a disclaimer to this post: I am not an economist! But hopefully it is still possible to shed some light on the arguments for and against leaving the EU in economic terms.
I’ve been asked to add to my earlier post on immigration regarding the situation with Turkey, since it was in the press a lot over the weekend.
So is Turkey really going to join the EU?