Is There a Scottish Approach to Citizenship? Rights, Participation and Belonging in Scotland

In: European Yearbook of Minority Issues Online
Eve Hepburn
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Had Scotland voted for independence in September 2014, it would have gained all the paraphernalia of statehood, including full rights over citizenship. But despite the “no”, can we still detect a Scottish citizenship without the machinery of statehood? This article examines Scotland’s ability to influence citizenship and migration policy from two perspectives. First, from a legal perspective, it examines the Scottish government’s limited control over citizenship, nationality and migration legislation, although it has a broader scope to develop its own approach to migrant integration. Next, the article considers citizenship from a broader political and sociological perspective, focusing on the extent to which the three facets of citizenship identified by Marshall in 1950—civil, social and political rights—have been decentralized with the creation of the Scottish Parliament. Finally, the article examines the ways in which the Scottish approach to citizenship has diverged from the uk (English) approach.

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