British political institutions (6): devolution & Brexit

This week, I attended the sixth and final session of the course at the City Literary Institute on “British Political Institutions“. This session was on devolution and Brexit and delivered by two lecturers: American Dale Mineshima-Lowe and British Mark Malcolmson.

The UK has a devolved system of government with a Scottish Parliament, a Welsh Assembly and a Northern Ireland Assembly (currently not in operation), but this is categorically not a system of federal government such as in the United States or Australia, partly because less than a fifth of the citizens of the UK are covered by the three bodies in question and partly because the three bodies themselves have different or asymmetrical powers from one another.

The planned exit of the UK from the European Union has further complicated the devolution debate, since there is fierce argument about whether the powers to be repatriated from the EU to the UK should be held by the government at Westminster or devolved to the administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

You can read the devolution section of my guide to the British political system here.


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