I am Lecturer in British Politics at the University of Edinburgh.

My research is all about the role of parliaments and legislatures and their place in democratic politics. So, I’m interested in:

  • How elected representatives interpret their role, especially with respect to scrutinising the government through committees;
  • The role of evidence, knowledge and scientific advice in parliamentary settings; and,
  • The organisation of legislatures and the role that parliamentary staff play in supporting elected representatives.

I have recently completed a four-year ESRC project entitled Interpreting Parliamentary Scrutiny that explores a lot of these issues, and focused predominantly on the UK Parliament.

More generally, I am also interested in:

  • Understanding the everyday life of politicians and how this affects their capacities to act as representatives;
  • How research undertaken by academics, think tanks and others influences or affects policy-making processes; and,
  • The way we can effectively study political phenomena, particularly engaging with debates on interpretive political science.

In addition to my role at the University of Edinburgh, I am the Co-Convener for the Political Studies Association’s Specialist Group on Parliaments and Legislatures, about which you can find out more here.

This website contains an online portfolio of my current academic research, recent publications and other activities.