Dr Ziegler has recently published the 'Report on Political participation of mobile EU citizens: UK'
This forms part of country reports across the European Union, and was commissioned by Globalcit, based at the European University Institute, Florence.
In the United Kingdom, non-citizen residents from EU Member States have the right to vote and stand as candidates in local and European Parliament elections. Nonresident citizens have the right to vote in national and European Parliament elections, providing that they have been registered in a UK constituency within the previous 15 years.
Active registration is required by both non-citizen residents and non-resident citizens on an annual basis. Once registered, non-resident citizens may vote by post, by proxy, or in person if they are in the UK at the time of the election. The practical obstacles for political participation are the differentiated regime of enfranchisement of non-citizen residents, the non-automatic registration system with its annual renewal requirement, insufficient targeting through informational campaigns, and the risk of inadvertent disenfranchisement through the move to Individual Electoral Registration (IER).
On the other hand, participation is facilitated by the provision of online registration and the extension of the Parliamentary election timetable from 17 days to 25 days.
The recommendations to improve participation are to enable same-day registration, improving targeted information to under-represented groups, introducing e-voting, and the introduction of an overseas constituency for non-resident citizens.