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Conference: The Law & Politics of Brexit: Constitutional Challenges in Regional and European Perspectives

A conference entitled ‘The Law and Politics of Brexit: Constitutional Challenges in Regional and European Perspectives’ will take place from 20–21 April at the School of Law and Government, Dublin City University. Participation is open to the public.


The decision by the people of the United Kingdom (UK) to vote in a referendum on 23 June 2016 to leave the European Union (EU) has produced shock-waves across Europe and the world. While the EU Treaty explicitly allows a member state to withdraw from the Union, no country thus far had ever decided to secede from what is arguably the most successful experiment in regional integration in history. Brexit, therefore, calls into question consolidated assumptions on the finality of the EU, and simultaneously opens new challenges – not only in the institutional fabric of Europe, but also in the constitutional settlements reached at the local level, e.g. in Scotland and Northern Ireland. While the path toward a full withdrawal by the UK from the EU remains clouded in uncertainties, a comprehensive legal and political analysis of how Brexit impacts on UK and the EU appears of the utmost importance. The aim of this international conference is to bring together leading academics and key policy-makers to discuss the constitutional implications of Brexit and propose possible solutions for the way forward.

The Conference will be structured around four main themes, each corresponding to a panel. First, the Conference will consider how Brexit will be implemented legally and politically, in terms of the withdrawal and the possible new relations between the UK and the EU. Second, it will examine the implications of Brexit on the constitutional structure of the UK, as well as on the status of Northern Ireland and the relations with Ireland. Third, the Conference will examine the implications of Brexit on the constitutional structure of the EU, focusing on a number of key areas of EU policy-making, notably the Area of Freedom Security and Justice and Economic and Monetary Union. Fourth and finally, the Conference will look into the mid to long term future, and discuss the prospects for relaunching the EU after and beyond Brexit. The Conference will feature the participation of some of the leading academic experts in the field, as well as of high-level policy-makers, from Ireland and the EU. By taking place in April 2017 – after the expected triggering of Article 50 EU Treaty by the UK government, which is scheduled to occur before the end of March 2017 – the Conference has the potential to provide one of the first high-level academic and policy gathering to discuss Brexit and the way forward.

Thursday 20 April 2017




Opening Keynote Speech: Ireland and the UK After Brexit

                       Chair: Prof. Brian MacCraith, President of DCU


Panel 1: Brexit: Politics, Process, Prospects
Chair: Robert Elgie – Professor of Government, School of Law & Government DCU

Kalypso Nicolaidis – Professor of International Relations, Oxford University
The Politics of the Brext: The Transformation of the European Order
Discussant: Diarmuid Torney, DCU

Paul Craig – Professor of English Law, Oxford University
The Process of Withdrawal: How will Britain pull out of the EU?
Discussant: Stephen Coutts, DCU

Giorgio Sacerdoti – Professor of International Trade Law, Bocconi University Milan
The Prospects for the UK after Brexit: How can Britain trade with the EU and the World?
Discussant: James Gallen, DCU


Coffee break


Panel 2: Brexit and Constitutional Change in Regional Perspective
Chair: Iain McMenamin, Professor of Government, DCU

Stephen Tierney – Professor of Constitutional Theory, Edinburgh University
Brexit and the English Question
Discussant: Tom Hickey, DCU

Sionaidh Douglas-Scott – Anniversary Professor of Law, Queen Mary University, London
Brexit and the Scottish Question
Discussant: Gezim Visoka, DCU

John Doyle – Professor of International Conflict Resolution & Dean, DCU
Brexit and the Northern Irish Question
Discussant: Brenda Daly, DCU


Matheson Dinner Keynote Speech: Brexit: A View From Private Practice
Chair: Gary Murphy, Head of School of Law & Government, DCU
Tim Scanlon, Partner at Matheson Law Firm

Friday 21 April 2017


Panel 3: Brexit and Constitutional Change in European Perspective
Chair: Stefani Weiss, Director, Brussels Office, Bertelsmann Stiftung

Deirdre Curtin – Professor of European Law, European University Institute
Brexit and the EU Area of Freedom, Security and Justice
Discussant: Karen Devine, DCU

Michele Chang – Professor of Political Economy, College of Europe Bruges
Brexit and the EU Economic and Monetary Union
Discussant: Michael Breen, DCU

Catherine Barnard – Professor of EU Law, Cambridge University
Brexit and the EU Internal Market
Discussant: Roderic O’Gorman, DCU


Coffee Break


Panel 4: Beyond Brexit: relaunching the EU?
Chair: Flavio Brugnoli, Director, Centro Studi Federalismo

Marlene Wind – Professor of European Politics, University of Copenhagen
Brexit and Euroscepticism: Will Brexit be Emulated Elsewhere?
Discussant: Eoin O’Malley, DCU

Uwe Puetter – Professor of EU Public Policy & Governance, Central European University
Brexit and the EU Institutional Balance of Power: Toward a New Equilibrium?
Discussant: Kenneth McDonagh, DCU

Federico Fabbrini – Professor of European Law, DCU
Brexit and EU Treaty Reform: A Window of Opportunity?
Discussant: Graham Butler, Aarhus University


Light lunch


Concluding Keynote Speech: The Future of Europe
Chair: Federico Fabbrini – Professor of Law, DCU
Roberto Gualtieri, Chairman, Economic Affairs Committee of the European             Parliament (tbc)

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This entry was posted on March 28, 2017 by in Conference, Uncategorized and tagged , .
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