Meg Russell been based at the Constitution Unit, University College London, since August 1998. She began as a Senior Research Fellow, and became Deputy Director in 2008. She is largely responsible for the Unit's research work on parliament. She is particularly known for her work on comparative bicameralism and the British House of Lords, but has also researched various aspects of the House of Commons and Commons reform. In the past she has also written on political party organisation, candidate selection and women's representation in politics.
Beyond academia, Meg has served as a consultant to the Royal Commission on Reform of the House of Lords and, from 2001-2003, was seconded as a full time adviser to Robin Cook in his role as Leader of the House of Commons. She was an adviser to the Arbuthnott Commission on boundaries and voting systems in Scotland, the House of Lords Appointments Commission and the Select Committee on Reform of the House of Commons (the "Wright Committee"). She has frequently given evidence to parliamentary committees, both in Britain and overseas.
This post has an eye-catching title, but it isn’t a joke – my question is deadly serious. David Cameron’s recent appointment of 45 new peers to the House of Lords has attracted predictable wails of outrage – from the media, from opposition parties, and indeed from myself. His Lords appointments in t... Read more
Although questions of what national self-determination means and how it can be exercised have changed over time, says Michael Keating, the response of the Spanish authorities to the 2017 Catalan referendum breaches the modern, democratic, notion of the right to decide.
Amidst the current, noisy, political debate about ‘bonanzas’ and ‘power grabs’ there is some measure of consensus between the UK and Scottish Governments as regards the need for (and value of) UK-wide ‘common frameworks’ post-Brexit, especially in relation to the functioning of markets within the UK. However, as Shepherd and Wedderburn's Gordon Downie explains, what might be described as the opening negotiating positions of the UK and Scottish Governments reveal wide differences on the scope and content of these new common frameworks, and on the constitutional mechanics that should underpin them.