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About Kirsty Hughes

Kirsty Hughes is a writer and commentator on European and international politics. She has worked at a number of leading European thinktanks including Chatham House, Friends of Europe, and the Centre for European Policy Studies and has published extensively including books, reports and as a journalist. She has also worked as a senior political adviser in the European Commission, for Oxfam as head of advocacy, and was CEO at Index on Censorship.

Articles by Kirsty Hughes

This week's editor

Tom Rowley is editor of oDR.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Seven reasons why a second EU referendum looks unlikely

Debate is not focused on the UK’s retreat from solidarity, partnership, voice, influence and the multiple connecting ties of the EU.

Scotland has four EU options - but which are realistic?

Everyone is trying to figure out what Brexit means - including Scotland.

Scotland and Brexit – what should Scotland do next?

Scottish First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has barely put a foot wrong in the days since the UK voted for Brexit. What should she do next?

Giving up control: where are we and what next?

The public as a whole – not just those who voted for Leave – have every right to have a say on what they would like to come next.

Scotland and the EU post-Brexit – independent Scotland in the EU or outside with the UK?

For Brussels, Scotland has become the good Europeans, England and Wales the bad.

Brave New World – first reflections on Brexit

The UK has stepped back from Europe, stepped back from the world – and in the process done deep damage to itself, the EU and the wider world.

After the Brexit referendum – four political impacts to watch for

While a vote for ‘Brexit’ will create by far the biggest waves, whichever way the vote goes on June 23, there will be political fall out to contend with. Here are just some scenarios:

Impact of Brexit on Scotland’s independence drive is hard to call

There is an intermediate path that the SNP may well take while it charts a path ahead, in the event of Brexit.

EU loses all moral standing on Lesbos

Humanitarian aid has become sidelined for a political agenda – the EU-Turkey deal – something that should be unacceptable for the EU: “humanitarian aid should be neutral, impartial.”

Has Cameron ensured the UK will always be weak in Europe?

Either way, there is no way to vote in the referendum for a strong UK in Europe – only for Cameron’s new opted-out, ‘Little England’ model.

3 scenarios for the outcome of the UK’s EU referendum

It is quite possible that England will vote differently to all three other constituent parts of the UK. And certain that the politics won’t end with the result.

Scotland might keep the UK in Europe

Could Scottish ‘yes’ voters deprive the eurosceptics of victory in the EU referendum?

The EU stumbles as crises mount

It is precisely at dealing with a world like today's, of instability and fast-moving events –  not open to easy or direct control – that the EU is, and always has been, very bad.

'Brexit' and workers' rights – no case for a 'no'

What is this crazy 'cut-off-your-nose to spite your face' strategy? How can we defend let alone improve EU workers’ rights by leaving the EU?

Rough waters ahead for Scotland if the UK votes 'no' in EU referendum

If David Cameron's EU referendum gamble fails and the UK votes 'no', what then for Scotland? Will it be smooth sailing to being an independent country in the European Union or tough battles with London and Brussels?

The UK's EU referendum and the EU's legitimacy crisis

"Is a UK that retreats in isolationist but somehow progressive splendour really feasible? Surely, European countries must cooperate in the face of the deep challenges and opportunities we face."

Smoke and mirrors over 'Brexit': key questions on the path to the EU referendum

Cameron has unleashed a process he won't be fully able to control, having major impacts on the UK's political dynamics and its constitutional future at home and in the EU over the next two years.

Scotland’s growing influence on UK foreign policy

Kirsty Hughes talks to Scottish National Party and Scottish Green politicians on foreign policy, the EU and the tectonic shift in Scottish politics.

Greece and the eurogroup: capitulation or breaching austerity's dam?

George Papandreou cancelling his referendum was a capitulation. Tsipras and Varoufakis achieving new space and flexibility and four months to achieve a genuinely new approach was quite an achievement.

Syriza win – hope for Greece and Europe?

Though the challenges they face are immense, Syriza have brought some much needed hope back to Greece - and even to the European Union.

Britain and the EU – a sorry tale of collapsing influence and dishonest debate

Without EU 'reforms' he may not even recommend a 'yes' in the referendum on membership in 2017, says British PM. But what he asks for is mostly there already.

EU myths, politics and scaremongering on an independent Scotland

The EU is governed by hard politics, and the easiest thing for everyone if Scotland votes yes will be that she never leaves the EU.

Why the UK has no foreign policy

In the absence of any political lead either from their UK masters or their indirect US ones, the UK's foreign office diplomats are left with little direction to exercise real clout, and no role, even on a realpolitik basis, to play in a changing and challenging world.

Gathering clouds over digital freedom?

The debate over the direction of the web has just started, and contradictory messages that need careful scrutiny are emerging from governments and corporations alike.

Lost in a 1990s timewarp: the UK and the European Union

Is the crucial change in the UK's position in the EU, that demands a referendum, really the need to extend UK doctors' working hours? And what of the EU – has it got a better story to tell?

What future for a Greece in crisis?

Will Greece see a process of painful rebuilding, be mired in stagnation and despair - or even face a social explosion?

Another summit, another bleak day for European democracy

The new 'fiscal compact' treaty agreed at Monday's summit aims to take vital economic policy choices out of the reach of democratic decision-making. Beyond that, there is no new thinking, nothing to stimulate growth, nothing to give some hope to the 23 million unemployed – and those who will join them as the recession deepens.

EU democracy in crisis: mired in a perfect storm or rebounding?

If the heart of the crisis lies in the politics – including in the politics of the economic policy choices being made – then solutions may lie, not in yet more EU institutional changes and the creation of an austerity union, but in the practice and the dynamism of democratic European politics. But a certain tradition of creating a theoretically more democratic Europe for the people even if they do not seem to want it has deep roots in the EU elites. So far, this hasn't worked.

The UK and Europe: how much damage did Cameron's veto do?

Reactions are still rolling in, just over a week after Cameron's veto. Was it the tantrum of an 'obstinate kid'? Whatever reasons he had, he has relegated the UK to the sidelines of Europe.

The five follies of David Cameron

Perhaps now, as the eurozone and the entire EU struggles to survive, there will have to be a serious debate in the UK about the EU.

Euro end-game or end of crisis? Eurozone heads into critical summit

There will be huge sighs of relief if the potential political and economic catastrophe of a break-up of the euro is avoided. But a return to 'normal' politics it will not be.

The UK's vanishing European influence

The UK has a choice over whether to be a small player on the margins of Europe. But to become so without any serious national debate is surely a major error.

Turkey's judicial-political crisis

Turkey's internal problems are intensifying its political and cultural fissures and putting its orientation towards the European Union in question. Kirsty Hughes reports on the gathering turmoil.

Britain through Indian eyes

Kirsty Hughes returns to her homeland after almost a year in south Asia and sees a different country.
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