08 October 2016

You Poor Delicate Flower, They Ignore Your Dazzling Brilliance!

Numerous prominent economists living and working in the UK are incensed that the current government will not consult foreign economists on how to manage the Brexit:
Leading foreign academics from the LSE [London School of Economics] acting as expert advisers to the UK government were told they would not be asked to contribute to government work and analysis on Brexit because they are not British nationals.

The news was met with outrage by many academics, while legal experts questioned whether it could be legal under anti-discrimination laws and senior politicians criticised it as bewildering.

“It is utterly baffling that the government is turning down expert, independent advice on Brexit simply because someone is from another country,” said Nick Clegg, the Liberal Democrats’ EU spokesman.

“This is yet more evidence of the Conservatives’ alarming embrace of petty chauvinism over rational policymaking.”

Sara Hagemann, an assistant professor at the London School of Economics who specialises in EU policymaking processes, EU treaty matters, the role of national parliaments and the consequences of EU enlargements, said she had been told her services would not be required. Hagemann tweeted on Thursday:


It is understood up to nine LSE academics specialising in EU affairs have been briefing the Foreign Office on Brexit issues, but the school was informed by a senior FCO official that submissions from non-UK citizens would no longer be accepted.

The staff concerned were then made aware of the instruction in an email from the head of the LSE’s European Institute, Kevin Featherstone, which said the Foreign Office planned to approach academics to contract staff for a Brexit advisory panel – but that those to be contracted “must be UK passport-holders.” 
These are arguably the most delicate negotiations for the UK in at least a generation.  The idea that the details of negotiations would be classified as a "NoForn" (No Foreigners) is not a particularly surprising.

The resultant hissy fit is both unseemly and thoroughly predictable.


Stephen Montsaroff said...

Sort of like denying visas to people you don't agree with.

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