The UK’s Withdrawal from the European Union: Influencing Policy Making and Improving Public Understanding

The UK’s decision to leave the EU is the most important development in national policy since 1945. Research undertaken by EU Law @ Liverpool has provided a rigorous body of evidence and analysis to inform and influence parliamentary committees and government departments, public sector organisations, NGOs and EU institutions as well as the general public within the UK and overseas.

REF2021 submission

The Challenge

The University of Liverpool has been at the forefront of legal research on the European Union for years. Our leading team of legal experts has contributed to academic, public, industry and parliamentary debates on the EU constitutional and institutional laws that govern the European Single Market and the free movement of citizens.

Research Action

Our work on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU has stimulated public interest and has enhanced understanding and informed public attitudes around the Brexit debate. In 2016, Michael Dougan, Professor of European Law, Jean Monnet Chair and one of the UK’s leading experts on European law, went viral. His YouTube video was uploaded just days before the Brexit referendum, directly reaching over eight million viewers.

The video was endorsed by well-known figures, including the economist Danny Blanchflower, the writer and rapper Akala and former footballer Gary Lineker. Professor Dougan’s work has also been shared widely in the national and international press including The New York Times, Le Figaro, The Independent, The Telegraph, The London Economic, The Guardian, and Bloomberg, among others.

Working in partnerships

Members of the EU Law @ Liverpool research cluster have collaborated across the department as well as engaging with external partners. Active members of the cluster who have contributed book chapters, written journal articles and provided interviews to the media include Dr Samantha Currie, Prof Michael Dougan, Dr Eleanor Drywood, Prof Michael Gordon, Dr Stephanie Reynolds, and Dr Andrew Woodhouse.

Outputs and outcomes

Professor Michael Dougan regularly speaks at public events, lectures and debates about Brexit. His book 'The UK After Brexit: Legal Policy and Challenges' offers important analyses of some of the fundamental challenges now facing the UK legal system as the UK leaves the European Union.

Book cover Michael Dougan The UK after Brexit

The UK after Brexit: Legal and Policy Challenges - Michael Dougan (ed.)

Published by Intersentia in July 2017. Visit the publisher's website.

Professor Michael Dougan on the EU Referendum 

Watch a video: (24 minutes, 41 seconds)

Published to YouTube on 14 June 2016 (just over a week before the referendum), this film as been viewed more than 570,000 times and has received over 5,000 likes.

Responses to the film

In addition to all the likes and shares, Prof Michael Dougan's viral YouTube film also generated some 2,000+ comments. Below are just a few of those responses: 

Finally some information on the referendum, without the political rubbish. Everyone needs to share and watch this. I am firmly voting REMAIN now.

Interesting. I am undecided but it is refreshing to listen to this guy who provides from real facts…He makes a good argument.

If you haven’t voted yet and are still wavering or even if you intend to vote out, listen to this first. It is factual and non-political and the professor has absolutely nothing to gain or lose with way. European law will still exist and affect Britain in or out of the EU.

Still unsure about EU vote? Take 24 mins & listen to Prof Michael Dougan who knows all about it. Unbiased. Apolitical.

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