We should welcome the increased reach and influence of select committees as a sign of a rejuvenated Parliament

In this post William Brett concedes that there is certainly a case for some clearer internal regulations guiding the process of committee hearings, but offers overall support for the role of select committees. By being able to operate in the public, political space between the law and private entities, they are integral in holding power to account and ultimately act in the interest of the […]

Select Committees are becoming the ugly face of Parliament: it’s time to rein them in

Adam Lent argues that Select Committees are increasingly characterised by an extremely aggressive style of questioning, becoming ‘public courts’ where individuals are tried on the strength of their performance rather than on the evidence. This has gone hand-in-hand with a broader mission creep, with their transformed role having thus far avoided meaningful public debate. I have attended a few Select Committees […]

Book Review: In Defence of Politicians (In Spite of Themselves) by Peter Riddell

How can voters trust politicians that consistently say one thing yet do another? Rory Creedon reviews Peter Riddell’s lastest work, which considers exactly how our levels of respect and trust have changed following the expenses scandal, cash for questions, and other sleazy political behaviour. In Defence of Politicians (In Spite of Themselves). Peter Riddell. Biteback Publishing. 2011. Find this book:  In […]

The select committee system is more effective than ever before. Now, a thorough review of their core tasks and resources is needed, to avoid them being bogged down under the weight of increasing workload and expectations.

Select committees in government are not new, but they have recently had a boost to their status and reputation – in July, millions watched the Culture, Media and Sport select committee question Rupert and James Murdoch over phone hacking. The Hansard Society’s Matt Korris argues that the increasing role and public expectations of select committees now places them with an […]

The House of Commons’ Select Committees are now more independent of government. But are they any better informed?

MPs exert their most effective influence on UK public policy via the network of select committees in the Commons that monitor each Whitehall department and the cross-departmental Public Accounts Committee. Last boosted in 1979 by the Thatcher administration, select committees have just won enhanced autonomy from government and party control, with the election of their chairs and choice of […]

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported
This work by British Politics and Policy at LSE is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported.