This is a joint project between the Federal Trust, Global Policy Institute and Industry Forum


The Federal Trust received at the end of 2015 a grant from the European Commission Representation in the UK to undertake a project exploring the difficult questions in the United Kingdom’s relationship with the EU. An initial conference was held on this topic in February 2016, but since the EU referendum on 23rd June the project has acquired a new dimension of topicality.

At the heart of the final phase of the project is a half-day conference in London on “Britain and the EU – Difficult Questions after the Referendum”, discussing present realities and future challenges arising from the referendum on 23rd June. It was held on 27th October 2016. A range of academics, politicians and commentators discussed such issues as freedom of movement, the triggering of Article 50, and the possibility of a “hard” Brexit.

Please click below for further details about the conference and the output resulting from it:

Conference programme

Conference Report (view online)

Conference Report (pdf file)

Video Interviews with speakers

A further element of the project was a survey of participants’ attitudes on the preferred relations of Britain and the EU. The three main findings from the survey can be summarised as follows:

  1. almost unanimity that Brexit is a threat to UK’s financial services sector and its international influence;
  2. far more enthusiasm for Parliamentary review of the Brexit terms than for a further referendum on the issue;
  3. strong support for staying in both the single market and the customs union.

Please click below for the press release and more detailed findings:

Media Brief: Findings from a new Brexit survey (view online)

Media Brief: Findings from a new Brexit survey (pdf file)

Difficult Brexit questions yield some consensus:
Brexit survey –  Full Results (pdf file)



EC Rep logo_pantone-hi res

This project is co-funded by the European Commission Representation in the UK


You will find our latest commentary on Brexit  on our Blog and on the Views from the Federal Trust page.