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School of Social and Political Science: Staff profiles


Daniel Kenealy

Daniel Kenealy
Daniel Kenealy
2.01 21 George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0) 131 650 4080
Research Interests
British government and politics, British political history, European integration, Devolution and constitutional change in the UK, International Relations theory, Archival research, Document analysis, Elite interviewing, Historiography

How to get in touch

From 18 September to 4 December I will be available as follows:

  • For students on Social Policy and Society on Mondays, 1.30-3.00;
  • For students on Understanding Public Policy on Mondays, 3.00-4.30.

If I am your personal tutor or programme director then please email me and we can arrange appointments as necessary.

My research interests

Although my PhD employed classical realism to understand the history of European integration I have, since 2013, spent most of my time researching British government and politics. Specifically, I have researched the UK constitutional change process; devolution to Scotland and England's cities and city-regions; and British foreign policy including the UK-EU relationship and Scotland's "foreign" policy. My interest in British government is both contemporary and historical and my work involves a lot of travelling to conduct elite interviews, document analysis, and work in archives.

I am currently working on two projects: 

  • The first is focused on the statecraft and territorial politics of the Thatcher government in the 1980s, and especially on relations between the UK government and Britain's cities.
  • The second applies classical realism to UK foreign policy, both contemporary and historical. Historically, I am undertaking research on the foreign policy of the Thatcher government. I am also working on the impact of the Iraq war on foreign policy discourse and debates since 2003.

I have presented my research at the University of Montreal, the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars, Georgetown University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the European Policy Centre, and Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik. I regularly offer comment and analysis on British and EU politics in Scottish, UK and European media outlets. During 2013-14 I served as expert adviser to the Scottish Parliament's European and External Relations Committee and have presented oral evidence to that committee on several occasions, as well as to the House of Commons' Scottish Affairs Committee.

My teaching

In the 2017-18 academic year:

  • Convener and lecturer, 'Social Policy and Society' (Undergraduate)
  • Convener and lecturer, 'Understanding Public Policy' (Undergraduate)
  • Personal tutor, 3rd year Social Policy students
  • Programme director, MSc in Social Research (semester 1 only)

Topics interested in supervising

I would be keen to supervise students interested in: the UK constitution and/or devolution; intergovernmental relations; the external relations and diplomacy of sub-national governments; UK foreign policy including the UK-EU relationship; central-local relations in the UK, contemporary and historical.

If you are interested in being supervised by Daniel Kenealy, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Politics; PhD in Social Policy; MSc (R) Politics; MSc (R) Social Policy