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Writing for ‘Brexiternity’? Reflections on Legal Scholarship on a Moving Target

The United Kingdom’s relationship with the European Union was supposed to be definitively settled several times during the past decade – yet it was not. The 2016 referendum brought about a surge in interest in legal questions, especially of EU law and international economic law. This presented scholars with a questionable gift: on the one hand, countless new opportunities for research, publications, and public visibility; on the other, the curse of chasing a rapidly and at times erratically moving target. Therefore, this essay reflects on the continued relevance of Brexit scholarship and different strategies for extending its shelf-life. It argues that the relevance of this scholarship may indeed extend into the future when foresighted and innovative approaches are being put forward.

Joris Larik
25 May 2023
Wolters Kluwer

Looking ahead, the essay observes that the Windsor Framework to overhaul the Northern Ireland Protocol likely marks the end point of the frenzied and fraught EU-UK relationship between 2016 and 2023. The essay concludes that, while disagreements will continue, the EU-UK relationship as a topic is entering a period of normalization. Rigorous legal and innovative interdisciplinary scholarship will remain necessary both to develop EU-UK relations as a sub-topic of its own and to embed it into wider discourses of EU and international law.

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