Committee hearings of the UK Parliament: Who gives evidence and does this matter?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

While evidence hearings by House of Commons select committees have received increasing attention by the public and the media in recent years, academic research on this topic has remained rather thin. Drawing on both quantitative and qualitative methods, this article examines this topic. It begins by explaining why evidence is important: (i) it is fundamental to sustain detailed scrutiny; (ii) it builds individual-level and institutional-level expertise; and (iii) the range of evidence gathered is used by committees to engage with the public. The article then presents empirical data of the pool of witnesses on which committees rely, which arguably does not reflect the UK population, which raises important further questions over the representative claims of committees.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)283-304
JournalParliamentary Affairs
Volume71
Issue number2
Early online date1 Sep 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018

Keywords

  • British politics
  • evidence
  • House of Commons
  • parliamentary scrutiny
  • select committees
  • UK Parliament

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