Christine Bell

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Professor of Constitutional Law
University of Edinburgh
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The impact of Brexit on Northern Ireland was dismissed by many Leave campaigners elsewhere in the UK as improbable. However, explains Prof Christine Bell, the speed with which Sinn Féin moved to trigger a poll suggests that the party with the most to gain may also have the least to lose by the gambl... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
Amid pronouncements about the UK as an island nation, scant media or political attention has been paid to its only land border with the EU - between Northern Ireland and the Republic. However, says Professor Christine Bell in this extended analysis, the impact of Brexit on the institutions built up... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
There has already been discussion of the implications of repealing the Human Rights Act (and leaving the ECHR) on devolution. Prof Christine Bell highlights that the UK government will need the consent of the devolved legislatures to proceed.    The Conservative government’s proposed repeal of the H... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
The proposed repeal of the Human Rights Act (HRA), and in particular its implications for devolution have attracted a lot of attention.  The proposal for repeal is set out in a Conservative Party proposal of October 2014, and mentioned in the Conservative Party manifesto on page 60.  Not included in... Read more
Post type: Publication
Clearly every aspect of the Smith Commission Report is of importance to both women and men.  What follows, is an attempt to assess where and how women have been specifically addressed, directly or indirectly, in the Report and its proposals. 1. No specific mention of women. Women do not receive a sp... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
The critical choice for the Smith Commission and any subsequent political negotiations over devolution in Scotland and beyond, is between: A Union based on a rationale of separation, where ‘sharing’ of power across the UK at Westminster will require to be justified on an on-going basis in terms of... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
In a post originally published in the Scottish Constitutional Futures Forum, Christine Bell challenges the necessity of reconciliation following the vote on independence. There has been some talk of the need for ‘reconciliation’ in Scotland post referendum.  For those who view reconciliation as some... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
Christine Bell discusses implications of the Scottish independence debate for Northern Ireland and calls for a more creative relationship between the centre and the periphery. This post was originally published at The Conversation. Northern Ireland’s oldest joke is that a man is asked, “Are you Prot... Read more
Post type: Blog entry
Getting to Maybe: Currency, Debt, and the Pre-negotiation of Independence  The UK government up until now has clearly stated that it is not going to ‘pre-negotiate’ the break up of the Union.  Yet to-day apparently the UK Chancellor George Osborne, along with support from the Labour party, is to rul... Read more
Post type: Blog entry

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