Richard Parry's blog
When devolution started, the civil service was not fully let go by the UK Government. It was called the ‘Scottish Executive’, a subordinate status to the only real ‘government’ in the UK. Its officials remained part of the Home Civil Service. The UK Prime Minister had to approve the appointment of the top two tiers of officials. The arrangements were defended as a necessary way of securing high standards of public administration in the devolved system.