My Special Relationship with the UK

by Christopher Wratil

Christopher Wratil

Christopher Wratil first moved to the UK for a university exchange year back in 2008. Since then he has spent about half of the time in the country, and the other half in Germany and Brussels.

When I came to the UK eight years ago, ‘Brexit’ was not a recognized term and the EU was low on the country’s agenda. I came for the same reason most EU university students come to the UK: I was seeking high quality education. As it happens my specialization was European Union studies. I aspired to learn from the Brits about their perspective on the Union and Brussels. I soon realized that this was an unrealistic plan: ‘European Governance’ at Oxford had 14 students. I was one of three Germans, we had an Italian, a Czech, a Slovak, two US Americans and a Swiss – but only one British girl. The seminar was lead by a Polish professor and my thesis supervisors were a Dane and a Spaniard. I had arrived inside the ‘EU community’ in the UK. It consisted of people from everywhere – but one place…the UK! more

20 December – 26 June: the Spanish journey towards political plurality…and the end of PSOE?

by Germán Jiménez Montes

Germán Jiménez Montes

20 December was indeed a turning point for modern Spanish parliamentarianism, when the journey towards the break with bipartisanism started. Time was then naturally needed to build a new balance of power in a far more pluralist parliament. Thus, the electoral processes of December and June can both be understood as being part of the same voting campaign that is meant to last approximately seven months and whose aftermath has been unavoidable from the beginning: a government coalition. The question is which one. more

Are UK citizens losing out in Brussels? Not really

by Christopher Wratil

Christopher Wratil

A common criticism of the EU is that Britain lacks influence in Brussels and Strasbourg and can be overruled by other nations. Christopher Wratil uses data from Eurobarometer surveys to analyse whether the EU does act in accordance with public opinion and, specifically, how well the views of UK citizens are represented compared to citizens in other EU countries. more