Editor-in-Chief’s Note

Published date01 April 2021
Date01 April 2021
Subject MatterEditorial
International Studies
58(2) 131 –132, 2021
© 2021 Jawaharlal Nehru University
Reprints and permissions:
DOI: 10.1177/00208817211010890
Editor-in-Chief’s Note
Britain’s departure from the European Union (EU) is a huge moment. This will
have a significant impact not just on the EU and the UK but also on their ties with
the rest of the world. Immediate impact is going to be on issues concerning trade,
migration and security. As Brexit drama unfolded in the last few years, scholars
working on European Studies and International Relations have followed many of
the details carefully. Despite some serious economic and strategic implications,
things on the Brexit front look more certain today than any time in the last four
years. The ending of transition period has also coincided with the EU−UK Trade
and Cooperation Agreement (TCA). The political drama in the UK and COVID-
19 disruptions had their own impact on negotiations. Although many questions
are still unresolved, the TCA has ended most speculations concerning different
Brexit scenarios. Unfortunately, this has also made a large part of Brexit literature
redundant. At the same time, this has also reduced many of the costly adjustments
for the European and third country businesses. Despite these positives, Brexit is
certainly a watershed development in the European integration project. Its impact
on the EU policymaking will be felt in coming years.
From the beginning, Britain has been a reluctant partner in the European
project. It did not join many of the EU initiatives including the Eurozone and
Schengen Area. Since 2016, different UK governments have advocated for
renewed international engagements through Global Britain. London has been
working for the continuation of EU trade agreements of which it has been a part,
and it is also working for new bilateral free trade agreements. New political
alignments in the post-Brexit EU may lead to some rethinking about its role in a
rapidly changing global environment, particularly in the context of transatlantic
tensions, resurgent Russia and rising China. Loss of British foreign policy
capabilities perhaps will be compensated through new initiatives by like-minded
EU member states.
At the School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), we
are following European developments carefully. Due to India’s historical linkages
with Britain, there has been an obvious interest in Brexit. I am glad that the Jean
Monnet Centre of Excellence at JNU collaborated with the University of Victoria,
Canada, for this special issue on Brexit. We are also grateful to its Guest Editor,
Professor Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, Jean Monnet Chair at the University of
Victoria, for encouraging scholars to participate in the project. We are thankful to
the eight scholars who have contributed their papers for the special issue. Although
the focus of the issue is on Brexit’s impact on the EU, a couple of papers have
looked at its implications for Canada, India, Japan and Northern Ireland. Others
have looked at various issues ranging from trade, migration, borders, citizenship

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