MORE than half of people who think Scotland has the right to decide its own future would accept sharing a currency with the rest of the UK after independence, new analysis has found.

A third of British Unionists also believe the UK Parliament should not make laws for Scotland in another “unexpected crossover”, according to the report.

The findings come from analysis carried out by David McCrone, emeritus professor of sociology at Edinburgh University and Michael Keating, emeritus professor of politics at Aberdeen University, which examines the idea that a “battle of sovereignties” between Scottish and British has emerged since the Brexit vote of 2016.

“The question of sovereignty has never been resolved in Scotland”, the report said. “On the one hand, there are those who believe that the Westminster Parliament is absolutely sovereign and supreme.

“On the other are those who insist that it is a union of nations, bound by the terms of union and periodically renegotiated.”

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The contradictory ideas around this have been exposed by the establishment of Holyrood in 1999, the independence referendum of 2014 and the UK leaving the EU following the Brexit vote, the researchers said.

The study found while Scottish sovereigntists were more inclined to want the Scottish Government or Holyrood make decisions for Scotland, with Unionists backing the role of the UK Government and Westminster, many responses to issues were “not straightforward”.

The SNP's policy is for Scotland to continue to use the pound sterling for a period after independence before adopting a Scottish pound.

The study found as many as 54% of Scottish sovereigntists say they would accept sharing a currency with the rest of the UK after independence, while 46% want the country to have its own currency.

While the majority – 58% - want Scotland to have its own armed forces, 41% say they would accept sharing this with the rest of the UK.

And on immigration, 31% think the rules should be the same in Scotland as the rest of the UK after independence.

There were also surprising results when it came to the views of British Unionists.

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Only around a third - 36% - believe the UK should decide on all taxes, while just three out of 10 Unionists think all welfare benefits should be decided by the UK Government.

When it comes on who has the right to decide on a second independence referendum, just over half – 54% - think it should be the UK Parliament alone.

Meanwhile, one-third of Unionists think Westminster should not be making laws for Scotland, even though this would be assumed to be a position only held by sovereigntists.

The analysis, which has been published in the journal The Political Quarterly, is based on responses from the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey carried out in 2021.

The definition of “Scottish sovereignty” used in the research is the belief that people in Scotland should be able to decide their own government and that they have the right to “dissociate” Scotland from the UK Brexit vote in 2016.

The academics found the latter issue was more influential, concluding that this group are “European Unionists rather than British Unionists”.

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“What we take from these findings is that, even among Scottish sovereigntists and British unionists, the two polar positions, there is considerable nuance and complexity, such that the sovereigntists are willing to accept sharing with the UK, even post-independence, while Unionists accede that many decisions should be the responsibility of Scottish Government,” the analysis said.

It added: “A further complication is that the Scottish sovereigntists are willing to share sovereignty with Europe, while the British Unionists, by and large, are not.

“This accords with modern understandings of sovereignty as something shared and divided, rather than a single thing which a nation does or does not have.

“This is very different from the Brexiter vision, which insists that all sovereignty must be concentrated in one place.

"It is the pursuit of this vision that has made the UK’s post-Brexit relationship with Europe so difficult.”