The September 2014 Scottish independence referendum was an event of profound constitutional and political significance, not only for Scotland, but for the UK as a whole. Although Scottish voters chose to remain in the UK, the experience of the referendum and the subsequent political reaction to the 'No' vote that triggered significant reforms to the devolution settlement have fundamentally altered Scotland's position within the Union. The extraordinary success of the Scottish National Party at the 2015 General Election also indicates that the territorial dimension to UK constitutional politics is more prominent than ever, destabilising key assumptions about the location and exercise of constitutional authority within the UK. The political and constitutional implications of the referendum are still unfolding, and it is by no means certain that the Union will survive. Providing a systematic and academic analysis of the referendum and its aftermath, this interdisciplinary edited collection brings together public lawyers, political scientists, economists, and historians in an effort to look both backwards to, and forwards from, the referendum. The chapters evaluate the historical events leading up to the referendum, the referendum process, and the key issues arising from the referendum debate. They also explore the implications of the referendum both for the future governance of Scotland and for the UK's territorial constitution, drawing on comparative experience in order to understand how the constitution may evolve, and how the independence debate may play out in future.
Issues of Independence and Union in the 2014 Referendum
Author: Michael Keating
Publisher: Oxford University Press
On 18 September 2014, Scotland held a referendum on the question: Should Scotland be an independent country? This is a most unusual event in modern democracies and engaged the political class, civil society, and the general public to an unprecedented degree, leading to an 85 per cent turnout in the final vote. This was an occasion to debate not just the narrow constitutional issue but the future of the nation, including the economy, social welfare, defence and security, and Scotland's place in Europe and the world. Debating Scotland comes from a team of researchers who observed the debates from close-up and engaged with both sides, with the media and with the public in analyzing the issues, while remaining neutral on the independence question. The book examines the main issues at stake, how they were presented, and how they evolved over the course of the campaign. The editors and contributing authors explore the ways both independence and union were framed, the economic issues, the currency, welfare, defence and security, the European Union, and how the example of small independent states was used. The volume concludes with an analysis of voter responses, based upon original survey research, which demonstrates how perceptions of risk and uncertainty on the main issues played a key role in the outcome.
Devolution and the Implications of Scottish Independence
Author: Great Britain: Scotland Office
Publisher: The Stationery Office
Category: Political Science
The UK Government is undertaking a major cross-government programme of analysis prior to the referendum on Scottish independence in 2014. The aim is to provide a comprehensive and detailed analysis of Scotland's place in the UK. This paper, the first of a series to be published in 2013 and 2014, examines the UK's constitutional set-up and the legal implications of independence. The UK Government is convinced that the current devolution offers the best for Scotland: the Scottish Parliament and Government are empowered to take decisions on a range of domestic policy areas - such as health, education, policing - while Scotland continues to benefit from decisions made for the UK as a whole - defence and security, foreign representation, economic affairs. Independence is very different to devolution. Based on independent expert opinion (published as Annex A), the paper concludes that if there were to be a vote in favour of leaving the UK, Scotland would become an entirely new state whilst the remainder of the UK would continue as before, retaining the rights and obligations of the UK as it currently stands. Any separation would have to be negotiated between both governments. Legal and practical implications of independence, both at home and abroad, are addressed. An independent Scotland would have to apply to and/or negotiate to become a member of whichever international organisations it wished to join, including the EU and NATO. Scotland would also have to work through its positions on thousands of international treaties to which the UK is currently party.
This book describes the recent Scottish independence referendum as the latest incarnation of a contest between two times on one hand, an ideally continuous time beyond determination underpinning financial sovereignty, on the other the interruptions to this ideal continuity inherent in human action.
Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: Public Administration Select Committee
Essay from the year 2012 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Culture and Applied Geography, grade: 2,7, University of Regensburg, language: English, abstract: Term Paper about the scottish independence referendum "We are bought and sold for English gold. Such a parcel of rogues in a nation." - Scotland's famous bard Robert Burns. It is said that personal financial interests, triggered through the failure of the Darien Scheme, a colonization project by the Kingdom of Scotland, and bribery led to the Acts of Union between the Parliaments of Scotland and England on 1 May 1707. The two Parliaments united and formed the Parliament of Great Britain. Since then, many individuals and organizations have advocated the return of a Scottish Parliament. Moreover, some have argued for devolution - a Scottish Parliament within the United Kingdom - whereas others have demanded complete independence. While the first referendum on a stronger devolution in 1979 failed, the second one in 1997 has been a success, leading to the Scotland Act of 1998 being passed and the Scottish Parliament being established in 1999. After its formation in 1934, the Scottish National Party won its first election in 2007 and, again, in 2011, delivering the first majority government since the opening of Holyrood - the law making body of Edinburgh. With the overall majority, and the Scottish Parliament combined, the case for Scottish Independence strongly reoccurs these days. Alex Salmond, the leader of the Scottish National Party and current First Minister of Scotland, is one of the main proponents of Scottish Independence, now intending to hold a referendum on this issue in the autumn of 2014. There are several points speaking in favor of independence but equal as many against it. Before weighing the pros and the cons of the issue, I will start off with a narrow description of the voting system and the questions concerning the referendum bill in general.
Author: Jo Eric Murkens,Peter Jones,Michael Keating
The first serious study of the likely road to independence, and the consequences, "Scottish Independence" starts with a detailed guide to the stages along the route to independence and goes on to analyze the legal, political and economic effects.
In September 2014, with the Scottish independence referendum, the United Kingdom came close to being broken apart after three centuries of one of the most successful political unions in history. Yet despite a conclusive No vote, the SNP took almost every seat in Scotland at the 2015 general election, and won a second majority at the Scottish parliamentary election of 2016. Tam Dalyell has been one of the key players in the debate about Devolution since 1962, when he was first elected MP for West Lothian. In this book he recounts his personal involvement with the issue, both during his parliamentary career and after, highlighting how both Labour and Conservative administrations have approached the question of devolved power for Scotland and ultimately failed to stem the Nationalist tide.
Thoughts on the Union before and after the Scottish Independence Referendum
Author: Peter Hennessy
Publisher: Haus Publishing
Category: Political Science
Despite the “No” vote in the Scottish Independence Referendum of September 2014, the issue of potential Scottish secession from the United Kingdom has likely only just begun. The Kingdom to Come is the first book-length look at the consequences and implications of this momentous event. Peter Hennessy discusses the run-up to the Scottish Independence Referendum and its immediate aftermath, as well as the constitutional issues the referendum opened for the entire United Kingdom. This book includes Hennessy’s personal impressions of recent questioning of the Acts of Union that created Great Britain and describes when he, as the top expert on Britain’s unwritten constitution, became an important voice in what might happen next. The Kingdom to Come also offers a valuable examination of the possible agenda for remaking the constitution in both the medium and long term.
Great Britain: Parliament: House of Lords: Select Committee on the Constitution,Stationery Office (U.k.)
Author: Great Britain: Parliament: House of Lords: Select Committee on the Constitution,Stationery Office (U.k.)
Publisher: The Stationery Office
This report finds that serious questions remain unanswered about the Agreement reached between the UK and Scottish Governments on the holding of a referendum on Scottish independence. The Agreement provides for power to hold a referendum on Scottish independence to be devolved to the Scottish Parliament. It proposes that this be done through a ministerial order under section 30 of the Scotland Act 1998; such a process would not require an Act of Parliament, and so limits the ability of MPs and peers to control the terms of the referendum. The Committee finds that neither the UK nor the Scottish Parliaments were given the opportunity to contribute directly to the Agreement negotiations. It questions whether a section 30 order would be robust enough to protect the decision to hold a referendum from legal challenge. Although such a challenge would be unlikely to succeed, it would delay the process and cause confusion. The Committee also finds that there may be legal and practical problems associated with the proposal to allow 16 and 17 year-olds to vote in a referendum. The Committee fears that, if the franchise is lowered, some 16 and 17 year-olds could be denied the right to vote because of inadequate process. The role of the Electoral Commission in important in ensuring that the referendum question is intelligible and neutral. Although the two Governments agreed on the advisory role of the Electoral Commission, the Committee thinks its advice is authoritative and should be followed.
Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: International Development Committee
Sixth Report of Session 2013-14, Vol. 1: Report, Together with Formal Minutes, Oral and Written Evidence
Author: Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: International Development Committee
Publisher: The Stationery Office
Category: Business & Economics
The UK's aid programme, much of which is delivered from Scotland, is genuinely transformational. The UK provided £8.7 billion of aid in 2012/13, but it is the quality of this aid - not just its quantity - which sets the UK apart. As part of the UK, Scotland makes a tremendous contribution to all this. If Scotland were to become an independent country, its development agency would inevitably be a much smaller player. From 2013 onwards, the UK Government plans to spend 0.7% of Gross National Income on Official Development Assistance. If Scotland were to become independent, the UK's overall GNI - and the amount of money it spends on ODA - would fall. "Scotland has 8.3% of the UK's population share, so we estimate that the UK's ODA would fall by around 8.3%, or £1 billion. DFID's work - either its bilateral programmes or its funding to multilateral organisations - would inevitably then be subject to cuts. MPs are also concerned that during any transitional period, the restructuring of DFID and the setup of an independent Scottish development agency would divert management attention towards restructuring and away from frontline delivery by both agencies. In addition, a significant proportion of DFID's workforce is based at its Scottish office in East Kilbride, including a number of senior staff. By contrast, the number of jobs available with an independent Scottish development agency is likely to be relatively few (or the new Scottish development agency would be heavily overstaffed). The impact on jobs would therefore be substantial.
Great Britain: Parliament: House of Lords: Select Committee on the Constitution
Author: Great Britain: Parliament: House of Lords: Select Committee on the Constitution
Publisher: The Stationery Office
Category: Business & Economics
In the event of a 'yes' vote in the Scottish independence referendum, MPs for Scottish constituencies, including ministers, should retain their seats in the House of Commons until the day of independence itself. However, they should not negotiate for the rest of the UK on the terms of independence, scrutinise the UK's negotiating team nor ratify a resulting agreement, as their first duty would be to their Scottish constituents rather than the interests of the rest of the UK. The Constitution Committee also says that the wider status of MPs for Scottish constituencies, in terms of their ability to take part in other Commons proceedings not relevant to Scotland, would have to be decided before the 2015 general election if there were a 'yes' vote on 18 September. The Committee concludes that in the event of Scottish independence the remainder of the UK would be the 'continuator' state and so retain its current international status and treaty obligations, as well as UK institutions such as the BBC and the Bank of England. Scotland would become a new 'successor' state and would not have any automatic claim on those institutions. There would be no constitutional or legal requirement for the UK Government to adhere to the Scottish Government's proposed timetable for full independence by March 2016 and that they should not do so if that would undermine the interests of the rest of the UK.
Images of the Scottish Independence Referendum Campaign from a Local Perspective
Author: Terence Chan
Publisher: Imagined Images Editions
This book is a collection of photographs mostly by photographers based in or around the Leith area of Edinburgh, documenting the 'Yes' campaign in the Scottish independence referendum, focussing mainly on their local area of Leith. However, it also looks further afield, to other parts of Scotland and at the same time hints at the global significance of the referendum.
‘Very good: extremely thorough, fair, well-written, and informed by a deep knowledge of Scottish politics’ Andrew Sparrow, THE GUARDIAN How did a working-class girl from Ayrshire become one of Scotland and the UK’s most prominent politicians? Nicola Sturgeon was identified as a rising star by the SNP leadership shortly after she joined the party aged only 16. When the Nationalists formed their first (minority) Scottish Government in 2007, she swiftly became one of its most successful ministers. Originally perceived as a tough, street-fighting politician lacking Alex Salmond’s broad populist appeal, over the years Sturgeon softened her image and began to outstrip her mentor in terms of voter approval. By the time Salmond resigned as First Minister and SNP leader in the wake of the No vote in the Scottish independence referendum of 2014, she was viewed as his natural successor. In this book, David Torrance traces the life and career of a remarkable woman. This new edition has been updated to include the SNP’s extraordinary performance in the 2015 UK general election, the 2016 Scottish Holyrood election and the aftermath of the EU referendum in June 2016.
Scotland's Choices, now fully revised for the critical last few months before the referendum, explains the choice that Scotland will have to make in September 2014. The authors clearly explain the issues and how each of the options would be put into place