Publications

Journal articles

Forthcoming

  • ‘Parliamentary Prorogation in Comparative Context’ (with Petra Schleiter), The Political Quarterly.
  • ‘Prorogation: Comparative Context and Scope for Reform’ (with Petra Schleiter), Parliamentary Affairs.
  • ‘Parliamentary Procedure under Theresa May: Nothing Has Changed?’, Parliamentary Affairs.

2020

  • ‘Procedural Change in the UK House of Commons, 1811-2015’, (with Niels D. Goet and Radoslaw Zubek), Legislative Studies Quarterly, 45:1, pp. 35-67. [Replication data]
  • Abstract.

    Recent research has shown an increasing interest in the historical evolution of legislative institutions. The development of the UK Parliament has received particularly extensive attention. In this article, we contribute to this literature in three important ways. First, we introduce a complete, machine‐readable data set of all the Standing Orders of the UK House of Commons between 1811 and 2015. Second, we demonstrate how this data set can be used to construct innovative measures of procedural change. Third, we illustrate a potential empirical application of the data set, offering an exploratory test of several expectations drawn from recent theories of formal rule change in parliamentary democracies. We conclude that the new data set has the potential to substantially advance our understanding of legislative reforms in the United Kingdom and beyond.

2019

  • ‘Partisan dealignment and committee power in five Westminster parliaments’, European Journal of Political Research, 58:2, pp. 536-556. [Replication data]
  • Abstract.

    What explains the power of parliamentary committees? A large literature on the United States Congress sees strong legislative committees as a consequence of legislators’ incentives to cultivate a personal vote. These incentives are typically understood to be determined by formal electoral rules. How legislatures are elected thus shapes how they are organised. This article argues that explanations of legislative organisation should also consider a non‐institutional source of personal vote‐seeking incentives: voters’ partisanship. Where partisan dealignment is more extensive, legislators have stronger incentives to develop a personal vote. Where committee systems are more powerful, legislators have better opportunities to do so. Partisan dealignment should thus lead to stronger committee systems. This argument is supported by analysis of original data on the postwar evolution of committee systems in five ‘Westminster’ parliaments. Partisan dealignment is associated with larger committee systems, and with larger expansions of committee systems.

Blog posts

My publications are also listed on my Google Scholar page.