Wales

The decision by the Secretary of State for Wales to pause the legislative process for the Wales Bill not only makes constitutional sense but, say Huw Pritchard and Lleu Williams of the Wales Governance Centre, it’s good politics. 

The Secretary of State for Wales, Stephen Crabb, promised to make “significant changes” to the Draft Wales Bill, a promise that has been warmly welcomed by many commentators.

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The Trade Union Bill is the latest in a series of standoffs between London and Cardiff, Furthermore, says Huw Pritchard, lecturer in Devolved Law and Governance at the University of Cardiff, the conflict may well encourage further tensions over the passage of the draft Wales Bill. 
 
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In the recent debate between Nigel Farage and Carwyn Jones, the First Minister's reliance on the risks of an 'Out' vote is unlikely to provide a convincing enough argument to persuade voters of the benefits to Wales of being part of the ‘two Unions’, say Dr Jayne Woolford and Dr Jo Hunt of Cardiff University's School of Law and Politics. 

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When the Draft Wales Bill was published in October 2015, it was described by Stephen Crabb, the Secretary of State for Wales as delivering on the UK Government’s commitment ‘to create a stronger, clearer and fairer devolution settlement for Wales’.  This is badly needed; the history of Welsh devolution since 1998 has been one of short-term solutions that have needed to be revised or replaced within a few years.
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Review Recommends Rejection of Draft Wales Bill

A report by an independent review group consisting of constitutional and legislative experts says that they could not recommend that politicians in Cardiff Bay and Westminster support the Draft Wales Bill in its current form.
 
The landmark report, “Challenge and Opportunity: The Draft Wales Bill 2015,” provides an expert commentary and assessment of the detailed provisions set out in the Draft Wales Bill published in October 2015.
 
Labour in Wales may be facing a tough election in May 2016 but unlike its Scottish counterpart, says Prof Roger Scully, it is likely to benefit from a divided opposition. 
 
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The draft Wales Bill represents the fourth model of devolved government for Wales since 1999 but, says Elin Royles, in its current form it is unlikely to be the last. 
 
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  • 16th August 2018

    A week after the state of intergovernmental relations (IGR) in the UK was highlighted by the UK government’s law officers standing in opposition to their devolved counterparts in the UK Supreme Court, the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee published a report on improving IGR after Brexit. Jack Sheldon discusses the methods by which England could gain distinct representation — something it currently lacks — in a new IGR system.

  • 10th August 2018

    Brexit is re-making the UK’s constitution under our noses. The territorial constitution is particularly fragile. Pursuing Brexit, Theresa May’s government has stumbled into deep questions about devolution.

  • 8th August 2018

    The UK in a Changing Europe has formed a new Brexit Policy Panel (BPP). The BPP is a cross-disciplinary group of over 100 leading social scientists created to provide ongoing analysis of where we have got to in the Brexit process, and to forecast where we are headed. Members of the UK in a Changing Europe Brexit Policy Panel complete a monthly survey addressing three key areas of uncertainty around Brexit: if —and when—the UK will leave the EU; how Brexit will affect British politics; and what our relationship with the EU is likely to look like in the future. The CCC participates on the Panel.

  • 2nd August 2018

    The House of Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee issued its report ‘Devolution and Exiting the EU: reconciling differences and building strong relationships’. Discussing its contents, Professor Nicola McEwen suggests that the report includes some practical recommendations, some of which were informed by CCC research. It also shines a light on some of the more difficult challenges ahead.

  • 31st July 2018

    The politicisation of Brexit, combined with deteriorating relations between London and Dublin, has created a toxic atmosphere in Northern Ireland, says Mary Murphy, which will require imagination and possibly new institutions to resolve.

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