The Future of the EU: Never Closer Union?

25. February 2021 18:00

Prof. Vernon Bogdanor

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Amongst the questions which my book, `Britain and Europe in a Troubled World’ seeks to answer is whether Brexit was a peculiarly British aberration or whether it reflects anxieties which are also held in the EU.
The European idea was developed in the 1940s and 1950s by elites who, in President Macron’s words, `built Europe in isolation from the people because they were an enlightened vanguard’. Can `ever closer union’ hope to achieve popular consent amongst 27 highly diverse member states at very different levels of economic development? Or do Europeans instead need, in Donald Tusk’s words, not more Europe, but better Europe – practical improvements rather than further integration? Is the Monnet/Schuman conception of Europe, which animated the earlier stages of European integration, now moribund?

VERNON BOGDANOR CBE is Professor of Government at the Institute of Contemporary British History, King’s College, London. He was formerly for many years Professor of Government at Oxford University. He is a Fellow of the British Academy, an Honorary Fellow of the Institute for Advanced Legal Studies, a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences. He has been an adviser to a number of governments, including those of Albania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Kosovo, Israel, Mauritius. Slovakia and Trinidad. His books include:
– The People and the Party System: The Referendum and Electoral Reform in British Politics; (Cambridge University Press, 1981)
– Multi-Party Politics and the Constitution; (Cambridge University Press, 1983);
– Power and the People: A Guide to Constitutional Reform (Gollancz, 1997);
– Devolution in the United Kingdom (OUP 1999);
– The New British Constitution (Hart 2009) and The Coalition and the Constitution (Hart, 2009).
– Beyond Brexit: Towards a British Constitution, (Tauris 2019)
– Britain and Europe in a Troubled World (Yale University Press 2020).
He is currently writing a multi-volume work on British political history from 1895 to 1997.
Vernon Bogdanor is a frequent contributor to TV, radio and the press. He was a consultant for the film about Churchill, `Darkest Hour’ with Gary Oldman and the play about the Queen, `The Audience’ with Helen Mirren.
In 2008, he was awarded the Sir Isaiah Berlin Award by the Political Studies Association for Lifetime Contribution to Political Studies. In 2009 he was made a Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur by President Sarkozy. He is an Honorary Fellow of The Queen’s College, Oxford, an Honorary D. Litt. of the University of Kent, and an Honorary Bencher of the Middle Temple.