Parliament and Government

SB 16-69 Subject profile – local government in Scotland

23 August 2016
This subject profile provides an introduction to local government in Scotland, including information on the organisation and functions of local authorities.

SB 16-34 Election 2016

09 May 2016
This briefing provides the result and analysis of the 2016 Scottish Parliament election.

SB 16-33 Key Issues for the Parliament in Session 5

9 May 2016
This briefing was produced by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) which is the Parliament’s impartial research service. It identifies some of the key issues that MSPs may face in the Parliament’s fifth Sess

SB 16-23 Lobbying (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3

2 March 2016
This briefing considers the parliamentary scrutiny of the Lobbying (Scotland) Bill prior to Stage 3 proceedings which are scheduled for 10 March 2016.

SB 15-79 Lobbying (Scotland) Bill

08 December 2015
This briefing considers the background to the Lobbying (Scotland) Bill, including the prior consultation by the Scottish Government on its proposals for a Lobbying Bill.

SB 15-60 Interests of Members of the Scottish Parliament (Amendment) Bill

28 September 2015
The Scottish Parliament had been given increased power over its members interests scheme by the provisions of the Scotland Act 2012.

How did Scotland Vote? - UK General Election 2015

07 May 2015
The UK General Election 2015 was held on the 7 May. This infographic provides details on the results in Scotland.

SB 15-21 Scottish Elections Reduction of Voting Age Bill

24 April 2015
This Bill was introduced on 2 April 2015. Its purpose is to introduce the changes to electoral procedures necessary to allow the voting age for Scottish Parliament and local elections to be reduced to 16 years old.

SB 15-16 Further Devolution for Scotland: The Draft Clauses

19 March 2015
This briefing provides background to the draft clauses and discusses some of the issues arising from them

SB 15-07 The Smith Commission’s Welfare Proposals

21 January 2015
This briefing provides a background to the UK Government’s current welfare reform agenda, details of the main political parties’ submissions to the Smith Commission, and details of the proposals made by the Smith Commi

SB 15-03 The Smith Commission Report- Overview

8 January 2015
The Report of the Smith Commission for further devolution of powers to the Scottish Parliament was published on 27 November 2014. This briefing provides background to the Smith Commission.

Scottish Independence Referendum 2014: Results

19 September 2014
On the 18 September 2014 Scotland was asked to vote in the referendum on independence. This note by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) looks at the results.

SB 14-09 Cowdenbeath by-election

24 January 2014
This briefing summarises the results of the Cowdenbeath by-election held on Thursday 23 January 2014.

SB 13-85 How Do Local Authorities Make Decisions?

19 December 2013
This briefing provides an overview of the decision making structures of local authorities in Scotland. The briefing includes the structure and role of decision making committees and recent developments in governance

SB 13-70 Dunfermline by-election briefing

25 October 2013
This briefing summarises the results of the Dunfermline by-election held on Thursday 24 October 2013.

SB 13-57 Scottish Independence Referendum Bill

11 September 2013
The Scottish Independence Referendum Bill is the second piece of legislation introduced by the Scottish Government in relation to the referendum on Scottish independence to be held on 18 September 2014.

SB 13-40 Aberdeen Donside by-election briefing

21 June 2013
This briefing summarises the results of the Aberdeen Donside by-election held on Thursday 20 June 2013.

SB 13-28 “Opening the can”: The Local Government Benchmarking Framework

20 May 2013
The purpose of this briefing is to introduce the Benchmarking Framework and outline how it can be used, but also the limitations and caveats that need to be applied to the data.

SB 13-18 Scottish Independence Referendum (Franchise) Bill

28 March 2013
The Scottish Independence Referendum (Franchise) Bill was introduced in the Scottish Parliament on 11 March 2013. The purpose of the Bill is to establish the franchise for the referendum on independence which is to take

SB 12-38 Local government elections 2012

8 June 2012
This briefing contains an overview of the Scottish government elections 2012

SB 12-31 The Local Government Finance (Unoccupied Properties Etc.) (Scotland) Bill

3 May 2012
This briefing covers the Local Government Finance (Unoccupied Properties etc.) (Scotland) Bill. It outlines the three main provisions, explaining the current position, the proposed changes and their anticipated cost.

SB 11-73 Draft Budget 2012-13: Local Government and Regeneration

29 September 2011
This briefing provides an overview of the local government, regeneration and planning budgets proposed for the Spending Review period. The figures in the paper are taken from the draft budget document.

SB 11-29 Election 2011 briefing

10 May 2011
This briefing provides an analysis of the 2011 election, considering the electoral system, election campaign, electoral behaviour, impact of results upon political parties and the new composition of the Parliament.

SB 11-28 Key Issues for the Parliament in Session 4 briefing

6 May 2011
This briefing has been prepared to assist Members of the Scottish Parliament to prepare for significant issues which are likely to impact on the work of the Parliament early in Session 4.

SB 11-24 Local Electoral Administration (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3 briefing

This paper summarises the main Stage 1 recommendations of the Local Government and Communities Committee and the Scottish Government's response to them, as well as the main amendments considered by the Committee at Stage 2.

SB 11-12 Local Government Finance (Scotland) Order 2011 briefing

This briefing details the local government finance allocations for 2011-12 as set out in the Local Government Finance (Scotland) Order 2011. The Order will be debated in Parliament on 10 February 2011.

Public Records (Scotland) Bill briefing

This briefing gives an overview of the various reviews which led to the Bill and to the responses to the consultation on proposed legislation, and how the Bill has addressed those responses.

SB 10-81 Draft Budget 2011-12: Local Government and Communities briefing

24 November 2010
The Scottish Government published ‘Scotland’s Spending Plans and Draft Budget 2011-12’ on 17 November. This paper provides an overview of the local government, housing and regeneration budgets proposed for 2011-12

Local Electoral Administration (Scotland) Bill briefing

The Local Electoral Administration (Scotland) Bill establishes an Electoral Management Board for Scotland, and extends the Electoral Commission’s remit to include Scottish local government elections.

Parliamentary Pay and Expenses 2010 briefing

This briefing provides an outline of the system of parliamentary pay and expenses in the Scottish Parliament. It gives data on expenditure against Members' expenses for 2009-10 and parliamentary pay for 2010-11.

Scottish Parliamentary Commissions and Commissioners etc. Bill briefing

Over the last 10 years the Scottish Parliament has set up six offices concerned with regulating and maintaining the standards of public service. The Scottish Parliamentary Commissions and Commissioners etc. Bill will establish a new standards body

Single Outcome Agreements 2009-10 briefing

This paper provides an overview of the 2nd round of Single Outcome Agreements. The Single Outcome Agreements for 2009-10 were signed off by the Scottish Government and Community Planning Partnerships (CPPs) in June 2009.

Parliamentary Pay and Expenses briefing

This briefing provides an outline of the system of parliamentary pay and expenses in the Scottish Parliament. It gives data on expenditure against allowances for 2008-09 and parliamentary pay for 2009-10.

Draft Budget 2010-11: Local Government and Communities briefing

The Scottish Government published the Draft Budget for 2010-11(Scottish Government 2009a) on Thursday 17 September. This paper provides an overview of the local government, housing and regeneration budgets proposed for 2010-11.

Interpretation and Legislative Reform (Scotland) Bill briefing

The Interpretation and Legislative Reform (Scotland) Bill was introduced on 15 June 2009 following a consultation. The Bill is a highly technical one which seeks to replace three transitional orders made under the Scotland Act 1998.

Comparative Political Decentralisation in Europe briefing

(This briefing was updated on 8 July 2009) This paper provides a comparative analysis of the degree of political decentralisation in five European countries.

Scottish Local Government (Elections) Bill briefing

The Scottish Government introduced the Scottish Local Government (Elections) Bill in the Parliament on 3 February 2009.

Parliamentary Pay and Expenses 2007-08 and Pay and Expense Rates 2008-09 briefing

This briefing provides an outline of the system of parliamentary pay and allowances in the Scottish Parliament. It gives data on allowances expenditure for 2007-08 and parliamentary pay for 2008-09.

Scottish Parliamentary Pensions Bill: Stage 1 Debate briefing

This briefing has been prepared for the Stage 1 debate on the Scottish Parliamentary Pensions Bill. It considers the background to the drafting of the Bill itself and the setting up of the Scottish Parliamentary Pension Scheme Committee.

Single Outcome Agreements briefing

This briefing provides an overview of the Single Outcome Agreements which have been signed between the Scottish Government and local authorities over the summer.

Debate on a Proposal for a Bill by the Scottish Parliamentary Pension Scheme Committee briefing

This briefing has been compiled for the purpose of a debate on a proposal for a Scottish Parliamentary Pensions Bill. It sets out in table form the work of the Committee established to consult on and draft the Bill.

SB 08-24 Glasgow Commonwealth Games Bill: Parliamentary Consideration prior to Stage 3 briefing

29 April 2008
This briefing summarises the Stage One recommendations regarding the Commonwealth Games of the Local Government and Communities and the Scottish Government response.

Local Government Elections 2007 briefing

This briefing details the results of the 2007 elections to Scottish local authorities. It considers the election in terms of the number of candidates standing, turnout, share of the preferences cast and political control of local authorities.

SB 07-57 Glasgow Commonwealth Games Bill briefing

22 November 2007
This paper considers the proposals contained in the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Bill within the context of the consultation responses received on the draft consultation version of the Bill.

Parliamentary Allowances and Pay briefings

Updated annual briefing on parliamentary pay and allowances to coincide with the release of Q4 expenditure figures. It updates SB 04/48, SB 05/81 and SB 07-09.9 (This briefing has been updated by SB 09/06 posted 22 January 2009).

Rejected Ballot Papers briefing

This paper summarises what constituted a ‘rejected ballot paper’ at the elections in May and then details the level of rejected ballot papers at the 2007 Scottish Parliament election and also at the local government elections held on the same day.

Local Government - Subject Profile briefing

This subject profile provides an introduction to local government. It describes the legislative and administrative framework, and provides an overview to the issue of local government finance.

Election 2007 briefing

This briefings covers the Parliament's electoral system, the election campaign, electoral behaviour and the polls, turnout, spoilt ballots, the impact of the result upon the political parties, the regional vote and the new composition of the Parliament.

SPICe Brexit/EU hub

EU Flag

Find out more information on the UK's decision to leave the European Union in the SPICe Hub (external site).

Briefings on digital hub

Person reading research briefing on tablet

You'll find all SPICe Briefings published from April 2017 onwards on our digital hub