Professor Nicola McEwen published a research briefing today on A nordic model for Scotland? Scottish - UK relations after independence.
The briefing notes that the existing forums for intergovernmental relations would be insufficient to manage Scottish-rUK relations in an independence scenario. For an example of both formal and informal coopeation, we might look to the Nordic countries as a model of cooperation between neighbouring sovereign states. McEwen notes that 'Formal cooperation is most evident when it produces clear 'added value' for each party'. Formal cooperation is likely to produce policy learning and the development of networks which may foster informal cooperation.
Although cooperation is common between the Nordic states, there are limits, both within the Nordic countries and of the model as one which might be replicated for Scotland and the rUK.
'European integration has limited the incentive for separate Nordic cooperation initiatives, though Nordic governments continue to cooperate over the implementation of EU directives. The Nordic countries do not usually act as a cohesive regional bloc in the EU – national interests prevail'
'Intergovernmental coordination among the Nordic countries offers useful insights for Scottish-rUK relations in the event of independence, but the Nordic Council and Nordic Council of Ministers offer limited opportunities for an independent Scotland, either for direct engagement or as a model for Scottish-rUK cooperation'