July 15, 2020
Speaker: Christopher Burdett
About the Speaker:
Dr. Chris Burdett is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at Virginia Commonwealth University, specializing in European government and politics, politics of the European Union, and political theory. His teaching and research interests include post-Cold War security cooperation in Europe, particularly security and defense cooperation in the European Union, as well as themes related to education, identity construction, and international politics.
Dr. Burdett received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia, with concentrations in International Relations and Political Theory. He holds an M.A. in European Affairs and International Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. in Government from the College of William and Mary. He has also completed programs at the SAIS-Bologna Center and the Free University of Brussels. Prior to arriving at VCU, Dr. Burdett held research positions at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and The Carter Center and twice served on the staff of Pat Cox, Member and former president of the European Parliament.
About the Event:
To bring a bit of the world back to Richmond and to catch up RWAC friends, patrons, and members with what’s been happening across the Atlantic, Rooz Dadabhoy, Chair of our Board of Directors, and Dr. Peter Smallwood, RWAC Advisory Board Member, recently invited esteemed academic and European expert Dr. Christopher Burdett to speak over Zoom.
Dr. Burdett covered a broad range of political and economic topics, from the likelihood (and likely effect) of a ‘No-deal Brexit’, to how Covid-19 has affected negotiations and public sentiment. Additionally, he spoke about the constitutional future of Britain (in relation to Scotland and Northern Ireland), as well as about its potential political and economic relationships with the EU in a post-Brexit world.
Focusing later on the domestic, Dr. Burdett also described the ways in which Boris Johnson’s Government has attempted to ready the general public for life after Brexit through a vigorous PR campaign, and the recent efforts of the Prime Minister to reform the country’s immigration policy and rejuvenate its infrastructure.
“The wheels of Brexit have been spinning in mud, they haven’t been going anywhere.”
“Covid-19 has made the public more anxious about the economic consequences of the pandemic being amplified by a no-deal Brexit.”
On a no-deal Britain after Brexit: “The sky is falling but not to the full extent.”
“We will continue to see the United Kingdom attempt to be a bridge between the common security and defense policy of the European Union and NATO, a role they have played comfortably for decades”.
“The United Kingdom is rolling out a points-based system that’s meant to facilitate high-skill immigration… it’s a stark reminder that with Brexit comes the end of free movement for EU nationals.”