What future for Franco-British security and defence cooperation?

This post originally appeared on the website of the Institut Montaigne.

Is Brexit a threat to the Franco-British defence and security cooperation ? Three questions to Dr Benedict Wilkinson, Senior Research Fellow at the Policy Institute at King’s College London.

Seven years after their signature, what is the impact of the Lancaster House Agreements on both France and the United-Kingdom (UK)?

At its most basic, the Lancaster House Treaties have made security and defence cooperation between the UK and France broader and deeper. For the French, the Treaties were mainly about getting the UK on board with their ambition to improve wider EU defence cooperation. In this, they were mostly successful. The British not only wanted to improve defence cooperation at the EU level, but also wanted a mechanism for engaging with the other leading European defence power outside of the EU framework. In this, they too, were mainly successful, for instance, in signing agreements in sectors such as missile production, nuclear and UAVs. Overall, then, the Treaties have had a positive impact: both parties have achieved their objectives and the partnership has become consequently more robust and encompasses a wider variety of areas.

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Shortlists and Swagger: How can we increase the number of women in parliament?

By Laura Jones

As I wrote in my last blog, Britain continues to make only glacial progress in its number of female parliamentarians, something The Times columnist and former Conservative MP Matthew Parris puts down to women’s perceived lack of ‘swagger’ – they don’t match local party members’ idea of how an MP should act and talk, and so highly qualified candidates put forward by Party HQ fail to make it to the final candidate list. Continue reading

Celebrating the impact of Wales’s research

By Kirstie Hewlett and Saba Hinrichs-Krapels

We and colleagues have carried out several analyses exploring the impact case studies submitted to the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), the national assessment of the quality of UK universities’ research.

We first looked at all 6,679 non-redacted impact case studies submitted to REF 2014. Then followed commissions to undertake further analyses of sub-samples, including a study funded by the National Institute for Health Research and another on international development. Now, for the first time, we have published a report, commissioned by the Learned Society of Wales, in which we analysed all of the case studies submitted for a single devolved country – the 273 impact case studies submitted from universities in Wales. Continue reading

Shortlists and Swagger: What’s behind the glacial progress of women in parliament?

By Laura Jones

It’s possible to detect a certain paucity of ambition in celebrating Britain taking its place as 38th in the global rankings of anything, but something like this was evidenced in the string of headlines last week touting the record breaking achievement of a 32 per cent female parliament. Although this was an improvement on the UK’s previous position at number 47 in the world, leapfrogging past Sudan and landing just south of El Salvador, it leaves us far behind much of Europe.  Continue reading

The end of roaming charges: the policy and politics in Brexit Britain

By Armida van Rij

With summer now firmly underway, and many people taking their holidays, our continental neighbours have a very timely present for the UK: as of yesterday, all EU citizens – including UK residents – will no longer pay roaming charges for using their mobile phones abroad in other EU countries, as well as being far less likely to face ‘bill shocks’ when returning from foreign trips. Unfortunately, however, there’s a big, obvious stumbling block for those of us who live in the UK: Brexit. So how will the UK’s departure from the EU impact British residents with regards to this policy? Continue reading