Constitutional Change and Territorial Politics in the United Kingdom

  • Michael Keating (Coordinator)

Impact: Social Impacts

Description of impact

Michael Keating’s work concerns how the United Kingdom has reorganised its tiers of government and its external relations to the European Union in a post-sovereignty age, and how these changes articulate with each other. His research has sought to clarify the competing meanings of terminology used during the debates on Scottish independence and Brexit, while recognising that protagonists operate within different conceptual frames and political languages. His impact involves novel forms of dissemination to enable key stakeholders at all levels of discussion to respond to these changes, allowing the public, politicians and state actors to understand the nature, consequences and implementation of decisions taken. This has taken place during a period of extensive constitutional change, and his work has focussed on the competing understandings of Scottish independence, the European Union, and the nature of Brexit.


The period of deliberations since 2013 has involved considerable constitutional change. Conducting political analysis in 'real time' is challenging, as it requires researchers to anticipate implications in the light of limited evidence. Keating and the wider team at CCC have introduced novel mechanisms to adapt rapidly to policy developments, and to produce substantive, concise and user-accessible analyses to suit a variety of audiences. These mechanisms have enabled effective communication of on-going events while retaining a 'big picture' and impartial academic perspective on the development of devolution, the UK state and tis relationship to the EU. The success of this approach, in particular Keating’s focus on end users, is evident in the extent and form of engagement; as a result his research has been picked up by a wide variety of stakeholders at all levels of the constitutional debate:
Impact statusImpact Completed (Open)
Impact date20132021
Category of impactSocial Impacts