IWA Debate: Will COVID-19 be the making or breaking of devolution?

IWA Debate: “Will COVID-19 be the making or breaking of devolution?
in partnership with Cardiff University

This week, the IWA is using our regular Thursday morning ‘Rethinking Wales’ slot to run the latest in our regular series of debates in partnership with Cardiff University.

The coronavirus pandemic has forced us to rethink almost every aspect of our lives. The public are more aware than ever of devolution, with high-profile differences on health and education policy being made as a result of COVID-19 by the UK Government and the devolved administrations – but have those differences also fostered confusion and resentment?

In this debate, we will consider:

  • Has COVID-19 shown that devolution delivers, or that it adds needless complexity and bureaucracy to decision making?
  • With devolution perhaps better understood than ever before, what do we know about public attitudes? Do people in Wales, Scotland, and England like what they see?
  • What has the impact been on border communities of accessing health services operating under two different regimes?
  • When the crisis is over, will the union be strengthened or weakened?


  • Laura McAllister (Chair): Professor of Public Policy and the Governance of Wales, Wales Governance Centre, Cardiff University
  • Mick Antoniw: Welsh Labour & Co-operative Member of the Senedd for Pontypridd
  • Valerie Livingston: Director of NewsDirect Wales, a monitoring agency specialising in the devolved nations
  • Mark Hooper: Spokesperson, Yes Cymru
  • Claire Mills: Abolish The Assembly councillor for Llanyre & Newbridge on Wye, Powys

Tickets for this event are free but limited. To confirm your attendance, please make sure to book your ticket.