1 December 2022

Understanding the UK’s new relationship with the EU

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A project to understand public attitudes to the UK’s future relationship with EU countries post-Brexit.

Media contact:
Steve Ballinger
07807 348988

British Future is a partner on a new research project, along with the Giacomo Brodolini Foundation in Italy and the 3 Million in the UK. Our main contribution to the project will be to understand attitudes and perspectives of the British public on the question of the UK’s future relationship and shared values with EU countries post-Brexit. This will include a large-scale public attitudes survey and focus groups in three areas of the UK, both with randomised samples of the public. The findings from this stage of the project will be published during 2023, with the wider project continuing to late 2024.

The project will involve a wide range of stakeholders, including policy makers at national and local levels, civil society organisations, the UK migration sector, academics, think tanks, charities and community organisations.

Other stages of the project will include the lived experiences of EU citizens in the UK. The project will also work with civil society organisations and other stakeholders to support the development and implementation of new UK/EU collaborative relationships and projects.

The UK voted to leave the EU in 2016. The withdrawal process has been lengthy and, at times, difficult. Six million people successfully applied to the EU settlement scheme to retain their citizens’ rights. Many of these have decided to make the UK their permanent home.

While UK public attitudes towards the EU have remained stable, views on immigration have softened, with the proportion believing that its impact is positive at higher levels than ever recorded. British Future’s immigration tracker survey has found that discussions about the contribution of migrants and personal contact have been contributory factors.

As the UK navigates its exit from the EU, a new relationship is needed between the UK and EU member states and between people both inside and outside the UK. There are many opportunities to build these: they include the pursuit of shared objectives around common values, cultural exchange and welcoming. More dialogue is needed and, more importantly, action to build bridges and bring disparate communities and people together.

For further information, please contact Heather Rolfe heather@britishfuture.org

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