Wicked Problems Collaborative
The Dividing Kingdom
Keep Calm and Brexit On?
On June 23, 2016, the citizens of the United Kingdom went to the polls to answer a simple question that would decide a highly complex matter. That they were at the polls at all was due to a bit of political expediency from then Prime Minister David Cameron as he looked to appease UK Independence Party.
The question the electorate was asked, "Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?" would determine whether or not the nation would in the union it had been a part of since joining the European Economic Community in 1973.
Leave took the day with a slim majority (52% to 48%) on the non-binding vote. The result flung Cameron out of office, while his replacement, Theresa May, took the helm clamoring for a quick triggering of Article 50 and an extreme version of Brexit that looked nothing like the one discussed in the campaign.
The UK has been shifting sideways ever since as its leaders repeatedly failed to find a path out of the mess they created for their people.
What's it about?
The Dividing Kingdom looks at major factors that contributed to the EU referendum result, including austerity, cuts to the National Health Service and education, concerns about globalization, and fomented racism and xenophobia.
It also covers the winding path the UK cut in the years between the EU referendum and the time when it became free to make its own deals in the midst of the global coronavirus pandemic.
The Dividing Kingdom will be available for reviewers in summer 2021.
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