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13 July 2014
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A State Apart

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Intergovernmental Relations
Intergovernmental
     
Image of the Scottish Parliament logo
The Scottish Parliament logo

The Blair government's devolution programme for Scotland and Wales along with the provisions of the Belfast Agreement for a North-South Ministerial Council and a British-Irish Council have established new constitutional arrangements among the nations of the United Kingdom and between Britain and Ireland. Blair's constitutional reform agenda will eventually extend to England. A start has been made with the election of a Mayor and Assembly in London in 1999 and the setting up of development agencies as possible precursors to regional assemblies in England. Once the English assemblies are in place, Blair's ambition to transform the political face of the United Kingdom will be complete.

The Scotland Act and the Government of Wales Act have transformed the once homogenous British nation into a new union of nations with separate legislatures in Edinburgh and Cardiff giving expression to Scottish and Welsh identity.

 
Audio and Video
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Key Academic Opinions
The British -Irish Council and England
A UK-Northern Irish federalizing process
     
Image of the Welsh Assembly logo
The Welsh Assembly logo

Devolution in Northern Ireland poses new challenges for unionists who, unlike the Welsh and the Scottish, consider themselves as part of the British nation rather than a separate nation. Blair's programme of devolution has put an end to the Ulster unionists' notion of Britishness. It remains to be seen whether the political settlement in Northern Ireland will lead to a new 'Ulster' identity.

 
Key Academic Opinions
The British-Irish Council and devolution
The British-Irish Council

 

     
 Audio/Visual resources:    
     
Image of Prof Elizabeth Meehan    
     
   

Other essays in The Belfast/Good Friday Agreement - Intergovernmental Relations:

North-South Ministerial Council
British-Irish Council
British-Irish Intergovernmental Conference

   
     



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