Relations between conceptions of national identity and EU integration in the Scottish National Party?

Van Der Zwet, Arno (2013) Relations between conceptions of national identity and EU integration in the Scottish National Party? In: UACES Centrifugal politics workshop, 2013-10-25, Queen's University Belfast. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

In a globalised world sovereignty is increasingly shared between different spatial levels. Such a pooled understanding of sovereignty is contradictory to traditional ideas of nationalism which emphasis the congruity between state sovereignty and the national unit. However, the way in which national unit is conceptualised is far from uniform. This paper explores the relationship between preferences for shared sovereignty and different conceptions of national identity in the context of the Scottish National Party. Using data from a large scale SNP membership survey and Scottish Social Attitude Survey data it analyses support for secession either within or outside the EU among its party members and affiliates. The results from binary regression models show that members and affiliates that hold a more internally exclusive conception of Scottishness are more likely to favour independence outside the EU when compared to those that have an internally inclusive conception. Furthermore, exclusive external conceptions (e.g. regarding oneself as exclusively Scottish and not British), at least for SNP affiliates, makes one more likely to favour secessionism outside the EU than people who also recognise both Scottish and British identities. The findings challenge the view of autonomist parties as ‘Europeanist par Excellence’.