UBC experts commented on political and economic prospects in the post-Brexit era.
Professor emeritus of economics John Helliwell told Maclean’s that political leaders will need to reconsider the assumption that more integration is better, saying: “Most of economic and social life is lived pretty locally. You don’t need to align many of your institutions with those in other countries to get the main advantages from it. The world trade system has been a pretty open one for the last 50 years.”
Kurt Huebner, a professor of European studies, told the Vancouver Sun that while the referendum is not binding, it would be “political suicide” to not follow through. He believes the Brexit vote ‘would start a constitutional crisis, with Irish unification and Scottish independence going back on the agenda. The Sun story also appeared in the National Post, Montreal Gazette, Ottawa Citizen, Calgary Herald and other Postmedia outlets.
In an interview with Daily Hive, Sauder School of Business professor John Ries speculated that Brexit could send an influx of immigrants to Canada if the UK becomes less open, as predicted.
Political scientist Allan Craigie told News 1130: “We are entering into a period of unknown now. There has been nothing like this in the annals of world history.”
In another News 1130 interview, political science professor Yves Tiberghien believes Britain’s vote could influence other members of the EU, such as the Netherlands and France, where a number of groups are calling for a referendum. However, other countries that receive support from the EU, such as Hungary, would probably stay with the European Union.