Careful what you wish for? Risk and reward tax with Scottish tax devolution

Stuart Mcintyre*, James Mitchell, Graeme Roy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


September 2022 marks twenty-five years since the referendum on the creation of the Scottish Parliament. From the early days of devolution, debates over Holyrood's tax powers have been a recurring theme. Recent reforms to the Parliament's tax powers have been driven by the Scottish National Party and the Scottish Conservatives, an indirect coming together of arguments from two unlikely political allies. Both have, however, embraced arguments for greater autonomy and fiscal responsibility within Scottish devolution. This article reflects upon the experience of enhanced tax devolution in Scotland through the lens of three competing ‘logics’ of devolution, namely: a logic of ‘accumulating competencies’; ‘delivering fiscal responsibility’; and ‘capacity to pursue distinct policies’.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
JournalPolitical Quarterly
Early online date20 Jul 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Jul 2022


  • devolution
  • Scottish Conservatives
  • Scottish government
  • Scottish National Party
  • taxation


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